In his first comeback to Old Trafford after being sacked, Jose Mourinho suffered a defeat against Manchester United, 2-1. The newly appointed Tottenham Hotspur manager didn’t receive booes or any unpleasant reception from the fans, but his former players did everything to make him uncomfortable.
The Spurs struggled to find their rhythm, especially in the opening part of the game. An early goal of the hosts seemingly disrupted their plans and changed the course of the game. But in general, Tottenham wasn’t up to the task this Wednesday, and Mourinho admitted that at the press conference following the game.
“We only have to blame ourselves,” said the Special One, who explained that United didn’t surprise them with anything. “I told the players about the way United approached their home matches with strong starts and people running and pressing and trying to lift the crowd.”
Marcus Rashford was harassing Spurs’ and besides two goals scored, he was creating all sorts of troubles for the guests. The 22-year old struck for the first time after six minutes of play, and after that, he added another goal from the penalty three minutes into the second 45 minutes.
Mourinho hailed the young attacker, whom he knows quite well. Rashford established himself as United’s leader precisely under Mourinho’s command, and it is safe to say that the Special One needs to be credited for his development.
“When he plays from the left, he is really dangerous, and I knew that and gave the players the best information about it,” he said.
United had a chance to score a few more goals until the 30th minute, but it was either Gazzaniga or the woodwork which saved the guests. However, Tottenham did bounce back in the late phase of the first half, and they tied the result through Dele Alli.
Mourinho was happy with the way his guys played in those moments, saying that the break interrupted their swing. During the pause, he ordered the players to remain aggressive and pressure United, but unfortunately, they conceded an early goal and it was very tough to bounce back after that.
Although the club from London dictated the tempo of play and had the initiative, Solskjaer’s team was defending very well, forming an impregnable block in front of De Gea’s net.
“We conceded that goal, which gave United the confidence and conditions to be more defensive and compact in the second half.”
This is the first loss of Mourinho since he arrived, and it is quite an unpleasant one. However, he isn’t feeling demoralized or anything like that.
“That’s the way it is. I will sleep at the training ground, and tomorrow we will start working,” Spurs’ boss added.
There won’t be much time until they have another game, and that is probably why Mourinho plans on sleeping at the club’s training complex.
Tottenham awaits Burnely this Saturday, in a match they simply need to win. At the moment, they are 8th in the standings with 20 points in 15 games and are 9 points away from the Champions League spot. When mentioning UCL, we need to say that Tottenham has a very difficult game coming up seven days, when they encounter Bayern Munich in Germany. Although the game doesn’t have any competitive meaning, the reputation is at stake, especially after a 2-7 loss in the first fixture.
Following that, the Spurs head for Wolverhampton, which will be another very challenging task for Mourinho’s boys. Nuno Espirito Santo, Wolves’ manager, worked under Mourinho and he knows everything about his tactics and game plan. So pretty rough times are ahead of the Special One and his team.