Thursday 17 August 2017

Jose Mourinho walks out of press conference after just 30 seconds as Manchester United end season in sixth

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho

Ian Herbert

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho’s bizarre post-match press conference lasted less than 30 seconds as he arrived in a near deserted room and left before any questions could be asked .

The Portuguese seemed to have planned to avoid questions by appearing in the room while his players did an end-of-season lap of the Old Trafford, making no appearance with them in front of fans. Within seconds of his press secretary asking were there "any questions?" from approximately four journalists present, he said "bye guys" and left the room grinning.

Mourinho's interview with MUTV was even shorter.

Mourinho is known to be unhappy about the way United’s form has been questioned and heads into this week’s Europa League final against Ajax nursing  simmering indignation with journalists. At a press conference on Friday, he accused reporters of lying in their reporting of his team and he returned to the subject in his programme notes for the home game against Crystal Palace, which United won 2-0.

He used them to mock former manager and Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness for having a “poor” managerial career, because the Scot criticised him for repeatedly complaining about the club’s heavy fixture list.

He also said in his notes that the injuries United had racked up had been ignored as had a workload of 16 matches in two months. “Don’t we deserve respect for that?” he asked. "Didn’t we deserve to be analysed in this context? Didn’t this team fight every second of every match?... Isn't this team going to play a European final next Wednesday? A pundit is not honest of they cannot forget their colours or if they try to hide the truth from their audience. It’s not my fault if their managerial career was poor.”

Palace manager Sam Allardyce said that his own club’s turnaround since January should be a source of celebration, though he rued a poor first half display and defender Patrick van Aanholt’s failure to find Christian Benteke in the game’s opening attack. He said that better supply could have immediately affected the  course of the game.

“We had two goals two shots on target and our two goals conceded were avoidable,” Allardyce said. “Had a go in the second half but couldn’t find a goal to put pressure on. Overall it’s been a great success since the turn of the year. Great success to get safe without coming to Man United needing any points.

"I think the finish [to the season] again is the joy of doing this job. The hardest bit is the beginning and the turn-around. The hours you spend trying to reverse a difficult situation behind the scenes and also the pitch.

“The problem lies on the football and within the club. Those new players [we signed] in January, the pick-up of those players [has been vital.] The performances have been very good.”

Independent News Service

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