Jose Mourinho suggested that a bad start and two key mistakes from the match officials cost Manchester United during their 3-1 defeat to West Ham United on Saturday.
“We were a team that comes with that mental fragility of a bad result [the Derby match]. Coming here and after five minutes we were losing 1-0, which is not the best way to start. The goal was offside and, last Tuesday with the VAR, it would not have been a goal. Then in the first half we had a good reaction but an own goal makes 2-0. An own goal where we knew Yarmolenko is very, very left-footed, we had to cover that side, we had Matic on the ball and Luke Shaw and Lindelof very close by, but we were not aggressive enough to close that shot and then we were losing 2-0.
“In the second half we took a little bit of time to react, but then we did. Their goalkeeper made a couple of good saves, their centre-backs had a fantastic match. Congratulations to the scout that found the 21-year-old kid, [Issa] Diop – a monster who dominated everything in the duels. Then we scored to make it 2-1, and there was a referee’s mistake – it was a foul on Marcus Rashford. Zabaleta didn’t have an attempt to play the ball, he just pulled the player from behind. And then the third goal killed the game and mentally killed the team that had a reaction and had a little bit of reward for that reaction. Not the pride – it didn’t kill the pride. I could see some of the players going until the end. I could see brave McTominay and Smalling trying to go forward and bring the ball, to go to set-pieces. But the third goal, mentally, was a big blow for the team.”
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“He was the best [of the back three]. He had a fantastic attitude, he’s aggressive and brave, and he has something that we thought was important for us: he has quality on the ball. He knows how to play football, he’s technically good, he can bring the ball into offensive areas, so I’m really happy with the job the kid did.”
“For how many months people is asking for Martial, Martial, Martial? For how many months is people saying, ‘Alexis Sanchez is not playing well enough’? So this week it was time to agree and to say: ‘Let’s give a chance to Martial and let’s leave Alexis out.’”
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“I have no complaints with the players’ attitude. I can have complaints with some quality; I can have some complaints with some mental approach in certain duels, where you could see, for example, Snodgrass coming to the pitch with an incredible attitude that he wants to eat the ball and wants to eat everyone around him. You need a little bit of that – I don’t know if it’s the right word in English – humility. You have always to try, also because that’s my nature as a football professional. But there are certain qualities we don’t have.”
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“For myself, speaking of my own feelings, I am really happy that we have a game on Tuesday. I am really happy that I now go to the train and I start immediately thinking about training tomorrow, about the match on Tuesday and I prefer that than playing next Sunday, with one week of these bad feelings. I look forward to that match on Tuesday and I hope the majority of the players have this same kind of mentality, and that they are looking forward to Tuesday.”
Jose Mourinho was speaking to BT Sport and MUTV.