'I'm not happy' - Jose Mourinho breaks his silence on the report claiming he was about to be sacked
An emotional Jose Mourinho has confessed he has been hurt by the criticism that has come his way in recent months, as he spoke for the first time about the report claiming he was on the brink of being sacked by Manchester United.
The Daily Mirror ran a back page story on the morning of United's last Premier League game against Newcastle claiming Mourinho would be sacked that weekend regardless of the result against Rafael Benitez's side.
Mourinho's future appeared to be hanging by a thread as his side's woeful first half performance left United 2-0 behind at the mid-way point in the game, but a late Alexis Sanchez winner completed a stirring comeback victory.
Two weeks later, Mourinho remains in place and heads into a game against his former club Chelsea on Saturday with his future at the club still under a cloud ahead of a run of games that includes two Champions League games against Juventus and a trip to face Manchester City before the next international break.
In an honest assessment of a turbulent few weeks at United, Mourinho told Sky Sports that the negativity around him has affected his own morale.
"No I am not happy," said Mourinho. "Honestly I am not happy. But if somebody has to be the man, I'd prefer it to be myself than my players. Yes it bothers me, because I am a man like you are.
When asked whether he was concerned about the effect doubts over his future is having on his dressing room, Mourinho replied: "Yes. My players...they care."
Mourinho went on to suggest United's disastrous first half performance against Newcastle was partly due to the newspaper story suggesting he would be sacked.
"I think the players in that weekend we didn't sleep in the hotel, everyone stayed at his own house, and I think the players when they woke up in the morning, from what they read, because they read and follow social media, I think the pre-match was not easy for them," said Mourinho.
"What I can do is tell them what I keep telling them: it is my problem, to cope with it, because I am the man and let them enjoy their football the way they did against Newcastle in the second half."