English Premiership

United better than last year - Mourinho

2017-10-11 15:28
Jose Mourinho (Getty)

London - Jose Mourinho says his Manchester United team are better than they were last year, playing down injury concerns as he prepares for a blockbuster Premier League clash against Liverpool.

High-flying United travel to face their fierce rivals at Anfield on Saturday looking to maintain a rich vein of form that leaves them trailing Manchester City only on goal difference at the top of the table.

Mourinho had a mixed first season at Old Trafford, finishing a disappointing sixth in the League but winning the Europa League and League Cup.

But big-money summer signings Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matic have impressed in the early weeks of the season, enabling United to keep pace with free-scoring City.

"I think we are a better team (than we were)," Mourinho told Sky Sports. "You can say, like some people do, we have not played one of the top five teams but last season we did not beat West Ham at home, last season we did not beat Everton at home or Southampton away.

"I think it would be unfair to say (Romelu) Lukaku and (Nemanja) Matic did not make an impact. We have to admit that and give them what they deserve.

"But also the team give Matic and Lukaku the conditions to arrive the way they have.

"Globally we are a better team. Does that mean we are going to be as successful as last season, winning two titles? I don't know. But we are better."

Mourinho, already without France midfielder Paul Pogba, shrugged off the loss of muscular midfielder Marouane Fellaini, who suffered a knee injury while on international duty for Belgium.

Asked about the Fellaini injury, Mourinho told Sky Sports: "No blow, no problem. We don't cry with injuries. We may cry with the process that leads to the injuries but we don't cry with the injuries. We just trust the players that are going to play."

United have also had concerns over the fitness of striker Lukaku, who has netted 11 times since his move from Everton, but he came off the bench and scored in Belgium's 4-0 win over Cyprus on Tuesday.

Mourinho said he was relishing the clash with Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool, who have struggled in recent weeks and are seventh in the table and have injury problems of their own, with forward Sadio Mane out for up to six weeks with a hamstring injury.

The Portuguese manager said he was relishing the trip to Anfield, where United played out a 0-0 draw last season.

"I like to play against the best teams, I like to play against the best clubs and I like to play at the best stadiums - the stadiums with more history," said Mourinho.

"At Anfield I've had great moments and I've had bad moments," he added. "They have had happiness against me, they have had very sad moments against me.

"(Now) if they respect me as much as I respect them, we are going to have another one of those matches."

NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
Saturday, 22 September 2018
Fulham v Watford, Craven Cottage 13:30
Liverpool v Southampton, Anfield 16:00
Cardiff City v Manchester City, Cardiff City Stadium 16:00
Leicester City v Huddersfield Town, King Power Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Wolverhampton Wanderers, Old Trafford 16:00
Crystal Palace v Newcastle United, Selhurst Park 16:00
Burnley v AFC Bournemouth, Turf Moor 16:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur, The American Express Community Stadium 18:30
Sunday, 23 September 2018
West Ham United v Chelsea, London Stadium 14:30
Arsenal v Everton, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Saturday, 29 September 2018
West Ham United v Manchester United, London Stadium 13:30
Arsenal v Watford, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Manchester City v Brighton & Hove Albion, Etihad Stadium 16:00
Everton v Fulham, Goodison Park 16:00
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Southampton, Molineux Stadium 16:00
Newcastle United v Leicester City, St. James' Park 16:00
Huddersfield Town v Tottenham Hotspur, The John Smith's Stadium 16:00
Chelsea v Liverpool, Stamford Bridge 18:30
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2018/19 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.