Sunday 20 October 2019

'No more excuses' - Former Man United hero suggests Jose Mourinho's time is nearly up at Old Trafford

Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Paul Ince has suggested Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is running out of excuses and may soon be out of his job as speculation over his future intensifies once again.

United were soundly beat by Juventus in Tuesday night's Champions League game at Old Trafford, with Mourinho suggesting after the game it was unrealistic for the club to compete with the top sides in England unless huge investment was made in the transfer market.

Former United midfielder Ince suggests that is an unrealistic demand from a manager who spent close to £400m on new signings since he took over as manager in the summer of 2016.

"When you watch United, they look like deer in headlights. It truly makes me wonder what exactly it is they work on in training every week," stated Paddy Power ambassador Ince.

"There's been a lot of money spent on players, some big-name ones too, and yet Juventus were far superior to them. The game, plus the results coming from Man City and Liverpool, really proved just how far United are away from winning anything.

"What's more, is that from the off you could tell Juventus weren't in anyway frightened of going to Old Trafford. Facing United didn't intimidate them one bit, and that's a serious problem. The stadium is no longer a fortress. They allowed the Italian side to walk all over them and made it easy for them to win. In fact, I'd go as far as to say United didn't look remotely capable of winning it from the off.

"Unfortunately, it doesn't surprise me. Even when you look at the Newcastle and Chelsea games, they were woeful in the first 45 minutes. They managed to get a result, yes, but they're totally inconsistent. It's a lie to say that they're playing well, they've been lucky to get the results they have."

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Ince believes Mourinho's position as United manager may soon become untenable, as he suggests the tide could turn very quickly against the Portuguese tactician could be close to an exit after his negative comments about the club's transfer policy in recent days.

"We're three seasons into Mourinho's reign now. There are no more excuses," he added. "You've spent a lot of money, if I was managing a team and they'd given me three years, and it was clear we weren't up to standard, I'd expect to lose my job.

"It looks to me like Jose Mourinho is stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea. Realistically, he wants to play defensively and nick a one nil win, but he knows that the fans and players at United won't accept that. And they're right not to.

"Are we getting to the stage where United just aren't good enough? Yes. They're slipping too far behind, and can't compete with the best sides anymore.

They're not even showing signs of improvement. In fact they're going backwards. He bought Fred who can't get a game, and the same goes for Alexis Sanchez. He's disappeared! His career has gone backwards.

"I can see why there's been criticisms of the board. But, in their defence, you can't go and spend £50 million on Fred just to stick him on the bench. You can't keep getting away with it and expect not to be questioned.

"Mourinho is too focussed on what the opposition are doing. Focus on your own team, instead. Your players look completely scared, they have no confidence at all.

"The sad fact is United have no presence any more. Liverpool do, Man City clearly do, even Chelsea in such a short time are showing what they're made of. Why after three years are Manchester United still trying to find a winning formula under Mourinho?

"They're trying to find a remedy, the right personnel and a style of play, and it's failing. With Jurgen Klopp, you know the direction his team are going in. You can see what they've been working on in training all week. With United, they look like they don't have a clue.

"The players don't know what they're doing. It's more of a case of go out, hope we get a result, see what happens. I'm not disputing they've got some incredible talent, but from what I'm seeing they don't know how to play together."

For more from Paddy Power's columnists visit: news.paddypower.com.

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