Champions League

Mourinho's United misfire once more

2018-10-03 06:48
Jose Mourinho (Getty Images)

Manchester - Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho shrugged off more criticism of his style after another insipid attacking display in a 0-0 draw at home to Valencia in the Champions League on Tuesday.

The home fans chanted for Mourinho's men to attack more in the second-half and former United midfielder Paul Scholes claimed the Portuguese coach is embarrassing the club with repeated outbursts at his players in the media.

"I'm not interested. Freedom of speech, free country, you can say what you like," said Mourinho of Scholes's comments.

"Freedom of speech, especially for Man Utd fans that I respect 100 percent."

Already nine points adrift of Premier League leaders Manchester City and Liverpool after three defeats in seven league games, Mourinho was hoping for a reaction from Saturday's dreadful display in losing 3-1 to West Ham United.

"I'm actually slightly surprised that he survived after Saturday, the performance was that bad," Scholes told BT Sport.

"He's coming out in press conferences and he's constantly having a go at players, he's having a go at people above him because he's not getting what he wants.

"I think his mouth is probably out of control and I think he's embarrassing the club."

United again looked devoid of ideas and invention to draw a blank and fall two points behind Group H leaders Juventus with two games against the Italian champions to come.

A point does at least consolidate United's position three points ahead of Valencia in second place.

United's night got off to a bad start before the game even began as kick-off was delayed by five minutes after the hosts were held up by traffic. Mourinho blamed a refusal by the police to offer an escort to the team bus rather than the club's organisation for the problem.

"We left the hotel at six o'clock hoping that 30 minutes would be enough, which normally it is. But this time the police refused to do an escort so we come by ourselves and we took 75 minutes," he added.

Mourinho recalled Alexis Sanchez, who had not even made the bench for Saturday's defeat, among four changes from the weekend.

But the Chilean again disappointed before being replaced 15 minutes from time.

In a recurring theme of United's decline over the past few months there seemed little cohesive attacking plan other than a series of long balls hurled towards Romelu Lukaku.

But Mourinho claimed he does not have the players to play more intricate attacking football.

"We don't have the technical quality to build from the back," added Mourinho.

"We knew we wouldn't create 20 chances. Our attacking players aren't in their best moments of confidence and individual level.

"We thought with three or four chances we would score and win the game."

Valencia registered their first win of the Spanish season at the seventh attempt at Real Sociedad on Saturday, but the Spaniards' struggles to score goals were also obvious despite enjoying plenty of possession.

"We created chances, but we lacked the final pass and finish to earn a victory against a very powerful team," said Valencia coach Marcelino.

Goncalo Guedes enjoyed most of Valencia's openings, but fired off target when well-placed on the edge of the area and mis-controlled when clean through on goal in the second-half.

The home faithful tried to rouse their side after the break with chants of "attack, attack, attack".

However, United were most dangerous from set-pieces as Marcus Rashford clipped the crossbar from a free-kick and Lukaku headed a corner over when unmarked.

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Fixtures
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
AEK Athens v Ajax, Olympiako Stadio Spyros Louis 19:55
CSKA Moskva v Viktoria Plzen, Stadion Luzhniki 19:55
Juventus v Valencia, Allianz Stadium 22:00
Bayern Munchen v Benfica, Allianz-Arena 22:00
Olympique Lyonnais v Manchester City, Groupama Stadium 22:00
Manchester United v Young Boys, Old Trafford 22:00
Roma v Real Madrid, Stadio Olimpico 22:00
Hoffenheim v Shakhtar Donetsk, Wirsol Rhein-Neckar-Arena 22:00
Wednesday, 28 November 2018
Atletico Madrid v Monaco, Estadio Wanda Metropolitano 19:55
Lokomotiv Moskva v Galatasaray, RZD Arena 19:55
Porto v Schalke 04, Estadio Do Dragao 22:00
PSG v Liverpool, Parc des Princes 22:00
PSV v Barcelona, Philips Stadion 22:00
Borussia Dortmund v Club Brugge, Signal-Iduna-Park 22:00
Napoli v Crvena Zvezda, Stadio San Paolo 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Internazionale, Wembley Stadium 22:00
Tuesday, 11 December 2018
Galatasaray v Porto, Turk Telekom Stadyumu 19:55
Schalke 04 v Lokomotiv Moskva, Veltins-Arena 19:55
Liverpool v Napoli, Anfield 22:00
Barcelona v Tottenham Hotspur, Camp Nou 22:00
Club Brugge v Atletico Madrid, Jan Breydelstadion 22:00
Monaco v Borussia Dortmund, Stade Louis II 22:00
Internazionale v PSV, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza 22:00
Crvena Zvezda v PSG, Stadion Rajko Mitic 22:00
Wednesday, 12 December 2018
Viktoria Plzen v Roma, Doosan Arena 19:55
Real Madrid v CSKA Moskva, Estadio Santiago Bernabeu 19:55
Valencia v Manchester United, Estadio de Mestalla 22:00
Benfica v AEK Athens, Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica (da Luz) 22:00
Manchester City v Hoffenheim, Etihad Stadium 22:00
Ajax v Bayern Munchen, Johan Cruijff ArenA 22:00
Shakhtar Donetsk v Olympique Lyonnais, Oblasny SportKomplex Metalist 22:00
Young Boys v Juventus, STADE DE SUISSE Wankdorf Bern 22:00
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