Sunday 21 January 2018

Neville tells Mourinho to 'go to war' with Guardiola and his rivals

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho (left) and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho (left) and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Former Manchester United defender Phil Neville has encouraged the club’s manager Jose Mourinho to “go to war” with his rivals after a challenging start to his time at Old Trafford.

Last Sunday’s 4-0 defeat at Chelsea was a low point in Mourinho’s early reign as United manager, with the Portuguese tactician feeling the need to apologise to the club’s supporters before and after their EFL Cup win against Manchester City on Wednesday.

Now Neville has urged Mourinho to come out fighting in his big to establish his authority as United boss, after a stream of negative stories in the media over the last few days.

“The supporters are not unhappy with Jose, but they are waiting for the real Jose to come out,” Neville told Sky Sports.

“When I see him in interviews and on the touchline, he looks a little bit reserved.

“I want him to come out and show the real Jose, where he’s fighting the world like he was at Chelsea.

“He went to war with Pep when they were at Real Madrid and Barcelona and you just hope he does it again.

“Sir Alex Ferguson did it all the time with managers that were competing against him. With a couple more wins under his belt, I hope we see the real Jose.

“I look back at previous managers of this club and they’ve never been afraid of saying what they want and acting like they have.

“Yes, there are traditions you have to uphold but United fans want to see the real Jose bring the siege mentality he had at Chelsea to Old Trafford.”

Neville went on to suggest the win against City could be a springboard to his side’s ambitions over the coming months.

“When you look at United’s next six games, victory over City can act as a springboard,” he added.

“United aren’t on a disastrous run, they’ve only lost one in the last seven.

“If they start hitting the ground now in the league, they are still in the title race as they’re only six points behind the leaders.

“City aren’t playing well, and teams are dropping points so it’s not a disaster.”

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