Mourinho is more calculating than Ferguson, says Meulensteen

Jose Mourinho became Manchester United manager over a year ago now, bringing success back, in a way, to the Old Trafford club. In his first season, a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League was not deemed good enough, but United lifted two major trophies; the EFL Cup and the UEFA Europa League, also lifting the FA Community Shield at the start of the season. Mourinho was the most successful manager in the top flight in England lifting two major honours with Chelsea and Arsenal lifting one each; the Premier League and the Emirates FA Cup respectively. This summer is going to be another big transfer window for United, as they all have been post-Sir Alex Ferguson. Mourinho will be expected to string together a team capable of taking on the likes of Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester City, Liverpool and even Arsenal to return back to the pinnacle of football in England.Rene Meulensteen, speaking exclusively to 888sport

Former United coach Rene Meulensteen has spoken about the Portuguese manager and compared him to the legend that is Ferguson. The Dutchman has stated that despite Mourinho knowing that his team will need to find a balance of competing to win matches but also play expansive football, which was Ferguson’s forte. Meulensteen has stated that he does not think the Portuguese manager is as expansive as Fergie was, suggesting he is more calculated, meaning he wants the same results, but is a completely different manager. In my mind, comparisons like this are good to a point, but they seem to get people comparing like for like and at this moment in time, there is no manager like Ferguson – he is a one off at this moment in time but Mourinho is a good enough manager to take the helm at United, achieving things on his own style, which is good. Meulensteen, speaking exclusively to 888sport, said:

“The style of football next season depends on what kind of players he brings in to bolster the squad. Mourinho said he had a lot of games last season but so did we and that’s what you want but having said that he did have a lot of injuries to deal with. He knew the squad wasn’t the finished article so he went about things the right way to ensure they made it to the Europa League final and to win that trophy. Now he will be looking to bolster the squad and he will know that Manchester United fans expect not only to compete to win games but also to play an expansive brand of football. I don’t think he will ever be as expansive as Sir Alex Ferguson was because that’s not in his DNA. He is more calculating and weighs things up to win and if that means a brand of unexciting football he would still happily pick up the points. He is not after the plaudits for having fantastic style. Fans will be happy if they’re winning and challenging for the title but they will always want more and again it depends who comes in because if they sign attack-minded players by definition that will result in a more expansive style.”

Mourinho is not after praise from pundits, former players and supporters for having this great and exciting style of football. He wants the plaudits for achieving things in the game and winning, no matter how you win, is worth just as much as ripping teams apart 3-0, 4-0 and 5-0, despite things maybe being a lot closer during the matches. United had problems in their attacking strength last season, but with the likes of Ivan Perisic and Alvaro Morata linked to the club right now, they would both improve United’s attacking ability, which may see United play much more attacking football, going back to the United way, which is what many have been calling for over the last few seasons. Mourinho may not be as expansive as Ferguson was at this moment in time, but this coming season, things could have changed which could see that being brought back into the squad.

Read the full 888sport interview with Rene Meulensteen, including his thoughts on how Morata should be Mourinho’s top target this summer.

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