SEVERE WX : Heat Advisory View Alerts
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Jose Mourinho: Manchester United manager baffled by criticism

Jose Mourinho's second season at Manchester United is proving a bumpy ride.Knocked out of the Champions League...

Posted: Mar 22, 2018 11:07 AM
Updated: Mar 22, 2018 11:07 AM

Jose Mourinho's second season at Manchester United is proving a bumpy ride.

Knocked out of the Champions League by underdogs Sevilla, trailing local rivals Manchester City by 16 points in the English Premier League and having scored the fewest goals of any of the top four sides in the elite division, Mourinho is facing plenty of questions about his management of United.

Jose Mourinho says he can't understand the criticism he is receiving

United out of Champions League and heavily trail Manchester City in league

Says Manchester City 'better prepared' than United

But says United are in a good position to get second

"I understand the frustration, I understand the sadness of being knocked out in the Champions League, but I don't understand anything more than that," Mourinho told CNN Sport's Amanda Davies Wednesday after managing Usain Bolt in the Match of Friendship in Basel during the international break.

Nonetheless, for a growing section of United fans the "Special One" -- who delivered a defiant 12-minute rant when he addressed reporters Friday following the Champions League exit -- isn't so special anymore.

United's cautious approach was there for all to see against Sevilla -- who had racked up Europa League titles but never before made a Champions League quarterfinal -- leading to a 2-1 defeat on aggregate in the round of 16 earlier this month with all three goals coming at Old Trafford in the second leg.

It was the kind of display United fans in the Alex Ferguson era didn't witness very often, even if the legendary Scot wasn't always about playing free-flowing football.

Read: Mourinho under fire after European exit

United did manage to beat Brighton 2-0 Saturday to advance to the FA Cup semifinals but even that was a far from commanding display, with the Portuguese himself calling his team "scared" at the "Theatre of Dreams."

Things could get worse for second-place United before they get better.

Manchester City under Pep Guardiola -- who Mourinho famously dueled with in La Liga when they managed Barcelona and Real Madrid, respectively -- potentially could clinch the Premier League title in the Manchester derby on April 7 at the Etihad Stadium.

As well as running away with the Premier League, Guardiola's team is playing a style of football that has the critics purring, though Mourinho claims the the blue side of Manchester has been "better prepared" to achieve success.

Manchester City 'better prepared'

"In the history of football all around the world, not just in England, you had the biggest clubs with the moments of transition, you have the biggest clubs with moments of continuous and permanent victories and these are phases in the club," said Mourinho.

"And I think really at this moment looking to us in the Premier League we have one team, one club clearly better prepared than us in the past few years to be first and we have 18 clubs behind us. One in front of us, 18 behind us," he emphasized.

Manchester United have won more domestic titles than any other English club but Mourinho is adamant the Red Devils are in a transitional phase.

This despite United spending more than 145 million pounds ($205 million) in the pre-season transfer window and signing Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal in the January window. Indeed if Mourinho hinted of City's immense finances, United have also gone big in transfers.

When Mourinho arrived at Old Trafford, United splashed out a then world-record 89 million pounds ($125 million) on midfielder Paul Pogba -- seemingly currently frozen out. The former Real Madrid, Chelsea and Inter boss, according to reports, last year became the first manager to dish out one billion pounds ($1.4 billion) on transfers overall.

Read: English derby in Champions League

Read: Race for Golden Shoe intensifies

"Of course in the future we want to have 19 clubs behind us but this is the reality," said Mourinho, who added to his trophy haul by guiding United to the League Cup and Europa Cup double last term.

"And the reality is for people with brain, with sense, with common sense, with knowledge of what sports is, we are in a moment of transition.

"Being in a moment of transition and still manage to do what he did last season and win trophies and to do what we are trying to do this season, which is still trying to win a trophy, and try to be second, because in this moment it's the only top position that is possible for us to get.

"I think we are in a good position."

Visit our football page for more football stories

Prior to the Manchester derby, United play host to rejuvenated Swansea City on March 31.

And as Mourinho attempts to build on United's "good position," he made this promise to the United supporters.

"Usain has a double meaning for me -- it's the meaning of what he represents in the history of sports and also what he represents in the history of humanity.

"He is a Manchester United supporter and my feelings towards Manchester United supporters is that feeling that I will give everything I can, everything I have to try and make them happy."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 398237

Reported Deaths: 32243
CountyConfirmedDeaths
New York City21748823218
Nassau420882187
Suffolk417301985
Westchester351061430
Rockland13668668
Orange10798484
Erie7544639
Dutchess4248152
Monroe4004273
Onondaga2997188
Albany2164121
Ulster184386
Oneida176098
Sullivan145948
Putnam134063
Niagara129790
Schenectady84337
Broome76258
Saratoga57817
Rensselaer57130
Columbia47937
Madison36717
Orleans28554
Ontario28333
Warren27333
Steuben27141
Greene26318
Fulton26224
Washington24714
Genesee2425
St. Lawrence2262
Oswego2073
Wayne1913
Herkimer1814
Tompkins1790
Chenango1575
Tioga15024
Chemung1472
Chautauqua1357
Livingston1348
Cattaraugus1286
Cayuga1222
Montgomery1214
Clinton1054
Wyoming975
Jefferson940
Delaware914
Otsego865
Seneca710
Allegany631
Schoharie590
Cortland530
Essex490
Yates486
Franklin330
Lewis310
Schuyler130
Hamilton60
Unassigned00
Utica
Few Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 86°
Oneonta
Few Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 79°
Herkimer
Few Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 86°
Thendara
Few Clouds
83° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 86°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Click here to learn more about A Healthier Mohawk Valley
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve
Senior Send-Off brought to you by Herkimer College
Menu 2 Go list of takeout dinners & fish fries
WKTV Golf Card - Under 150 left