Jose Mourinho’s Reaction After Manchester Derby

Jose Mourihno

Manchester United – Jose Mourinho was naturally disappointed to have suffered his first competitive defeat as Manchester United manager on Saturday, after rivals Manchester City claimed a slender victory at Old Trafford. Here are the main points from the manager’s post-match interviews…

First reflections
“What did I make of today? I think in the first half they were much better than us. We started the game badly. We started the game with some players really below the normal level, in terms of their concentration, of their mental ability to play a game of this speed because you need to be sharp in the way you think, the way you play. In a match of this dimension, when you have three or four players not at that level, you pay for that. The team paid for it.”

Derby of two halves
“In the first half, for 35 minutes it was City in control, City deserved to be in front. In the last period of the first half we scored a goal and we could immediately score again but I think that was outside the context of the game in the first half. The second half was completely different, and when they brought on Fernando, they were feeling what everybody was feeling, that we were in control. We were much more dangerous, we had our chances to equalise and who knows what could happen if we had equalised. For 45 minutes, we fought really hard. We tried everything, took lots of risks and deserved a different result.”

Deciding factors in defeat
“I think we were punished by a lot of things. First thing: our first half – the way we started, some individual performances made the team look fragile. We were also punished by two decisions of Mark [Clattenburg], because even the best referees can make mistakes and he made two mistakes. The first one is Bravo [on Rooney] – it’s a penalty and a red card. If any player does that outside the box, it’s a direct free-kick and a red card, so inside the box it’s a penalty and a red card. But the referee maybe thought of the consequences of that because the consequences would be a completely different game and he didn’t want to take that decision, which would be very important. And the second one is another penalty – Otamendi, with his elbow. He tries to stop the cross that’s going in front of him but the cross goes behind him, he’s looking to the ball and brings the arm and elbow back, and it’s another clear penalty. So we were also punished by that.”

Right team selection?
“Look, honestly, I had two or three players in the first half who, if the game was played now and I know what is going to happen, then I wouldn’t play them. But this is football and sometimes players, they disappoint managers, and sometimes players, they give us great surprises. I thought because of the characteristics of the game we could hurt them playing with some individuals with some qualities, they didn’t give what I want. Is it their fault? Is it my fault? It’s my fault because I’m the manager and it’s always my fault because it’s always my choice.”

Positives to take from the second half
“The positives I take are the spirit of the group and the mentality to play the second half in the way we played it, taking enormous risks against a team that was defending and was waiting for a chance to counter-attack.”

Two substitutions at half-time

“I would have done more if I could, because I was far from happy with the performance and I had to try to change the direction of the game, which we clearly did, but we didn’t get the compensation of what we did in the second half. I was feeling [we would score again] until the last minute, like we did at Hull City. When you feel that the team is there and ready to give everything until the last second, you are always waiting for something. And in the last 15 minutes, against a very good team obviously, we gambled in such a way that we left one against one in defence and went forward with everybody else to try to take to City a situation of big pressure, which we did. But again we did not get the compensation we deserved. In the first half we were punished like we deserved, but in the second half we didn’t get the compensation we deserved.” More


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