Saturday 20 January 2018

'No problems between me and Wenger'

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho. Photo: Reuters
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho. Photo: Reuters

Miguel Delaney

Jose Mourinho says Arsene Wenger does not need to try to "make peace" with him, because he believes they have a respectful relationship and "no problems".

The Manchester United manager even joked that his Arsenal counterpart will be happier with him than ever due to the fact he will be forced into picking a much-changed team at the Emirates tomorrow.

The pair have had a rancorous rivalry, having exchanged barbs and even physical shoves over the past 13 years.

Wenger had said on Thursday he was open to a thawing of their relationship, but Mourinho believes that is already the case.

"He doesn't need to (make peace)," the Portuguese said. "Because there are no problems. In the last match at Old Trafford, we shook hands before, and after I met him in the corridor for the press conferences, and we shook hands again. "When there is peace, we don't have to have problem. I am a big boy, I'm in football all my life, I know a problem on the pitch the next day is not a problem at all.

"And I think he will be really pleased with me that I am going to change my team against Arsenal!"

Mourinho has confirmed David De Gea will return in goal, having used Sergio Romero for the Europa League win over Celta Vigo, but refused to guarantee either goalkeeper a place in the final if the club get there as he does not like "complete separation" of competitions.

The dilemma comes at a pointed time given the increasing questions over whether De Gea will go to Real Madrid in the summer. Mourinho had been asked after the Celta game whether that speculation had any influence on his decision, only for the United press officer to cut the question off.

Mourinho yesterday insisted that his decisions show he trusts all of his goalkeepers, and also described 20-year-old third-choice Joel Castro Pereira as "the best Portuguese goalkeeper of the next generation".

"I don't like to say this competition is for one goalkeeper, that competition is for another one," Mourinho said. "Sergio played one match in the league, David played two matches in the Europa League. I don't like that complete separation.

"But Sunday, David plays. We have two fantastic goalkeepers."

Arsenal v Man Utd, Live, Sky Sports 1, tomorrow, 4.0

Independent News Service

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