What Jose Mourinho really wishes he could tell you about Manchester United
After unexpectedly changing the time of his press conference last week, it's hard to track down Jose Mourinho these days. Fortunately, our special correspondent was in the right place at the right time late on Monday night after Manchester United lost to Spurs. This is what the Man United manager had to say (OK, not really ... )
"Oh. You are here. I did not expect you to be here. I thought that if I changed the time without telling anyone ... and the location ... but, no. You have found me. Well, I salute you.
And you will want an explanation, no? Yes. Your kind always do.
We worked all week. And by the geopolitical point of view, we did not lose. By the thermodynamic point of view, we did not lose. By the philosophical point of view, what is losing and what is winning? But, yes we lost the game, 3-0.
And so again you look at me with your face of doubt. You go away and you think: third season syndrome. You think I have gone off. Like a bad wine.
But are my triumphs really so distant? Second place last year with points that would normally win a championship -- higher than your beloved Liverpool. The year before that: A quadruple. The Europa League. The League Cup. The Community Shield. The Stretford Local Business Association Quality Staff Catering Prize. And it should not be forgotten that I have twice finished in the last five on Fortnite.
Do not make that face at me.
Yes, it is true. Players have changed. When I started as a manager, if the players had their phones in the dressing room, it was because they were playing snake. Or it was because John Terry needed 45 minutes to tap out I wll B hme L8, dont w8 up on his Blackberry. Now Jesse Lingard documents the growth of his toenails on Instasnapps and Luke Shaw will not log out of JustEat.
But I have moved with the times. I now use scouting software to isolate clips showing individual areas of my players' weaknesses. Then I use iMovie to add a soundtrack of me screaming, 'You are worthless! You are destroying my legacy!' over the top. Then I send them to Chris Smalling. Every. Single. Day.
Nothing? No. It is easier for you to sit there and scratch yourself, isn't it?
Even you must know that not all the blame falls at my door. Look at Paul Pogba. When he plays for France, he plays with freedom, he plays with a smile on his face, he uses his skill and dynamism to break through the lines. And he wins the World Cup. When he plays for me? Nothing. Nothing. What has changed? What is different? You will have to ask him.
Then there is Ed Woodward. My constant "Ed-ache," ha. Why are you not laughing?
How am I supposed to win championships when he will not let me improve the squad? I need to buy defenders. I said to him at the beginning of the summer, 'I need to buy defenders.' He said, 'You have already bought two defenders, they were £30 million each. What's wrong with them?' So it is clear. He does not understand football. For he is not a football person.
But these are the facts: When you take away the £100m for Paul Pogba, the £75m for Romelu Lukaku, the £50m for Fred, the £40m on Nemanja Matic, the £30m and God-knows-what-we're-paying-in-wages for Alexis Sanchez, the £30m for Victor Lindelof, the £30m for Eric Bailly -- take all of that away and we have spent less than Burnley. And so Ed Woodward expects me to keep up with Manchester City on Burnley's budget. It is madness.
But what do you know? You are a cat. And I am trying to have a relaxing bath. One for me. None for you. Go on, get out. Daddy will feed you when he's finished. Respect. Respect. Respect. Respect."