The combination of Manchester United’s Champions League elimination by Sevilla and Jose Mourinho’s post-match remarks saw the Portuguese attract significant criticism, but the manager has come out swinging in response as he went on a 12-minute tirade on Friday.
After Wissam Ben Yedder stunned United by inspiring Sevilla’s 2-1 win at Old Trafford on Tuesday, Mourinho risked the wrath of supporters by saying a Champions League exit was “nothing new” to the club.
That did not go down well and he came in for criticism, but the 55-year-old hit back in Friday’s news conference.
Here are the 10 best quotes from Mourinho’s diatribe:
1. Mourinho claimed United’s fans are lucky to have him
“I could be in another league where the title is in [my] pocket, practically won before a ball is kicked.”
2. The ‘Special One’ is not about to modify his attitude
“No way are you going to change my mentality. For me, I don’t know if you know the expression, there is a quote I like; ‘in every wall is a door, every wall is a door.'”
We ask the fans for forgiveness following our exit. Last night was terrible and we must all reflect and take note so it doesn’t happen again. It’s painful, but we have to get right back up, dust ourselves off, and look ahead. pic.twitter.com/knViVhAmcw
— Eric Bailly (@ericbailly24) March 14, 2018
3. The manager made the brave choice to remind fans of the club’s European failings (at length)
“The last time Man United won the Champions League, which didn’t happen a lot of times, was 2011. Sorry, reached the final. Since 2011; 2012 out at the group phase, the group was almost same group we had this season, with Benfica, Basel and Otelul Galati – out in group phase. In 2013, out at Old Trafford in the last 16, I was on the bench.
“In 2014, out in quarter-finals, 2015 no European football. In 2016 they come back to European football, go out in the group phase, goes to the Europa League and in the second knockout, out of Europa League. In 2017, they play Europa League, win Europa League with me, and goes back to Champions League. In 2018, win group phase with 15 points from possible 18, loses at home in the last 16.
“In seven years, with four managers; once not qualifying for Europe, twice out in group phase and the best was quarter-finals. This is football heritage.”
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) March 16, 2018
4. In another bold decision, Mourinho pointed out Manchester City’s recent Premier League success
“In the last seven years, the worst position of Manchester City was fourth. In the last seven years, Man City was champion twice.”
5. There’s a theme developing here – the boss dissected United’s domestic struggles after Alex Ferguson
“If you want to go to the Premier League, the last victory was 2013 – and in the four consecutive seasons United finish fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh, so in the last four years the best was fourth. This is football heritage.”
6. Mourinho was audibly jeered as he headed towards the tunnel on Tuesday, but says he will be the first out on Saturday
“I’m not going to run away, disappear, cry, because I heard a few boos. I won’t disappear from the tunnel, running immediately. The next match I’ll be the first to go out.”
— Sevilla FC (@SevillaFC_ENG) March 14, 2018
7. Schadenfreude in full effect?
“I understand for many, many, many years it was really hard for people that don’t like me; ‘here he is again, he wins again’. So for those months I win nothing, 10 months nothing. The last title I won was 10 months ago. I beat Liverpool, Chelsea, lose to Sevilla – it’s their moment to be happy. Be happy with others happiness even if they are your enemies.”
8. Apparently, supporters seem to know what Mourinho is on about when he discusses “football heritage”
“If the fans, and many of them are ones you speak with, many are ones I speak with, I am very lucky and you [are] very unlucky, but [the] ones [who] speak with you are disappointed, [the] ones I speak with know what is football heritage, know what is a process.”
FT: #MUFC 1 Sevilla 2.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) March 13, 2018
9. Determined to bequeath a legacy
“One day when I leave, the next Man Utd manager will find here [Romelu] Lukaku, [Nemanja] Matic, of course [David] de Gea from many years ago. They will find players with a different mentality, different quality, different background, with a different status, different knowhow.
10. Nevertheless, everything is apparently rosy behind the scenes
“The good thing for me and the amazing feeling for me is that I am exactly on the same page as the owners, [and chief executive] Mr [Ed] Woodward – exactly same page.
“We agree with everything, agree we have a process, agree in investments, agree we have what we have.”
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