Van Persie Moyes Manchester United
Robin Van Persie believes David Moyes needs time to improve the current situation at Manchester United . Reuters

"Lousy" was the word Manchester United striker Robin Van Persie used to describe the English Premier League champions' performances this season.

United plumbed previously unknown depths of despair on Tuesday night, going down 2-0 to Olympiakos in the last 16 first leg match of the Champions League, and with it rendering their chances of making Europe's elite competition even more minute.

The Red Devils lie eleven points behind Liverpool, who currently sit in the final Champions League position, and Van Persie, who criticised his teammates following the 2-0 reverse to Olympiakos, admitted things were pretty bad at the moment.

"We are lousy -- in a lousy position in the league, out of the cups and this [the Champions League] looks a difficult one also," the former Arsenal skipper was quoted as saying by The Sun.

"We are very disappointed. It's a tough season. Sometimes we play good but not always. And we are not lucky. That's no excuse, though. We need to turn it around."

Van Persie believes the pace of United's play was far too slow to cause Olympiakos any trouble, with the Greek side taking a 2-0 lead into the second leg courtesy goals from Alejandro Dominguez and Joel Campbell.

"We are able to play in a high tempo with massive power but in Greece it was all too slow," the Dutchman said.

"Olympiakos didn't create a lot either. The first goal was lucky, the second goal was a great one and for the rest of the game they didn't have any good chances."

United's poor performances have naturally piled the pressure on David Moyes, but Van Persie insisted the Scot must be given time at Old Trafford to turn things around.

"He is new and needs time," the 30-year-old added. "He's working hard and so are we. It's easy to point at the manager but that's not who I am. We need to do it on the pitch.

Van Persie, in the aftermath of the 2-0 defeat, had criticised his teammates for hampering his chances of scoring. "Our fellow players are sometimes occupying the spaces I want to play in," Van Persie told Dutch TV channel NOS on Tuesday. "And when I see that it makes it difficult for me to come to those spaces as well.

"So that forces me to adjust my runs, based on the position of my fellow players. And unfortunately, they're often playing in my zones. I think that's a shame."

Reports have suggested Van Persie might look to leave Manchester United in the summer. But it is also believed United will refuse to listen to any offers for the Dutchman, like they did with Wayne Rooney, who eventually went on to sign a new five-and-half-year contract, as Moyes looks to rebuild the team starting next season.