Man United's miserable night in Bristol got even worse after the final whistle
Manchester United’s miserable trip to Bristol on Wednesday night took a turn for the worse as the plane they had planned to take back to Manchester was cancelled due to fog.
Jose Mourinho and his players were forced to make the three and a half hour journey back to Manchester by coach, meaning they did not get back to the club’s Carrington training base until 5am.
The post-match confusion added to the gloom for United, who saw their defence of the trophy they won at Wembley in May brought to an end after a lacklustre performance at Ashton Gate.
While travelling by coach to games was normal practice until recent years, the delay will not have amused Mourinho, who was not impressed with the performance of some of his fringe players in the 2-1 defeat.
"The reality is that the ones that were on the pitch were the ones that were not in the last match and are the ones that not are going to be in the next match," Mourinho told MUTV.
"I think they lost a good opportunity also to play semi-finals and also to have two more matches to play.
"But I don’t want to blame the players at all because I think they were professional. It wasn’t a case of ‘we don’t care about the game’ or ‘we don’t have responsibility’ or ‘we don’t have pride’.
"I think they showed they had that after the 1-0 and they had that until they scored the second goal in the last few seconds and we had no chance to react."
Mourinho made ten changes to his team for the cup tie in Bristol, with Luke Shaw, Matteo Darmian and Daley Blind among those who failed to impress.