”If my team played like Chelsea did, I can imagine what everyone would be saying.”
When the final whistle blew at Wembley, we all knew a José Mourinho soundbite worth rolling your eyes was imminent and the Manchester United boss did not disappoint. José was quick to point out Chelsea didn’t deserve to win despite them scoring one goal from no shots (his words). It was classic Mourinho deflecting blame and criticism as we have seen before and are seeing with more regularity.
To be a supporter of José Mourinho is to be fully indoctrinated into the cult of José. One must fully buy into every word of his gospel and dispel any notion of free thought. What Mourinho says goes, even when his words are a cleverly designed ploy to distract one from reality. However, here are the facts. José Mourinho is a manager who has built his career on one thing and one thing only – winning.
He has never cared for the beauty of the game. He has never felt it was his duty to entertain. The only possession stat of importance to him has been how many trophies his teams have in their possession come May. Sorry José, only your staunchest supporters will buy into your words regarding whether Chelsea’s deserving of the F.A Cup. The rest of us will have a chuckle because we know if the footie gods had offered you that that sort of winning performance Saturday morning, you would have bitten their hands off.
It would be silly to use one match as the defining game to judge United and Mourinho on this year. And, thankfully, we don’t have to. Saturday’s result was not a one-off – it was an extension of the struggles many have noted have existed in United all season. Despite possessing attacking talents such as Sanchez, Pogba, Mata, Martial, Rashford they still look like a team devoid of any sense of creativity, imagination or attacking fortitude. Missing his target men in Fellaini and Lukaku was a big blow for Mourinho that his team could not recover from. You have the answer now when you ask ‘why always Lukaku?’ Mourinho would surely have been thinking on the sidelines once again. Ye, we see. We see that an overreliance on target man football has stunted the growth of fine attacking talents in Martial and Rashford.
“I know how to win – but I don’t play.” is what Mourinho said after West Brom scalped them at Old Trafford and while it is totally agreeable that players should be called out when they are performing poorly, surely there should be some leeway given to those not being put in a position to perform effectively? There’s only so much a mismanaged player can do before you have to call a spade a spade.