Manchester United have drawn their third consecutive home game and are now potentially 10 points behind the league toppers. This was a must win game for United, first of all to make up the distance to the top four but also to get some kind of momentum going. United, barring the first three game, have never really put together a run of wins and that seems to be causing the issues at the moment. Just imagine, United picking up the deserved amount of points from their last three home games and things would have been largely different. They could have been just four points off the top but here they are, sitting sixth in the table, potentially ending up seventh by the end of this game week.
Of course, like several times this season, the referee played some part in United’s draw, which seems like a loss, in this game too. The goal scorer for United today, however, chose to not make any certain comments on it.
“I dunno. Valencia says he throws him to the ground but I did not see.”
He was visibly disappointed and understandably so, when asked about his thoughts on the game.
“I’m very frustrated, to be honest. We were really close to winning the game but this is the Premier League, this is football and you know that every team fights until the end. They did that and had one chance at the end of the game, Giroud with a great header, and we only get a point.”
It is tough to even imagine to be in Jose Mourinho’s boots right now. A clear penalty not given but cannot comment on it as that would mean another fine and ban. He has to sit through these good and some times brilliant performances only to see small mistakes cost him and his team couple of points. It was a similar case today too. Arsenal deserved absolutely nothing from this game and one shot they had got them the equalizer. Mourinho echoed similar sentiments when he spoke to sky sports after the game.
“Of course it is two points dropped. We were the best team by far. They had no chances to win. They could not be Arsenal the way they normally play football. We were phenomenal defensively. We scored a fantastic goal, we had chances to win the game and then the only time we had a situation we could not resolve, they scored. They are the lucky ones and we are the unlucky ones.”
He also was quite positive about his team’s performance and deemed them “the unluckiest team“.
“We are the unluckiest team in the Premier League.
“In the last three matches at home, against Stoke we have to win 5 or 6-0 and we draw, against Burnley we have to win 5 or 6-0 and we draw and today we have to win 2 or 3-0 and we draw too, so I think we are the unluckiest team. But the team is playing well, the team is working really well.”
Obviously, there was going to be a question about the penalty and learning from his past experience, Mourinho decided to dodge it, rightly so. But while doing so, he also made sure that his appreciation for the referee Andre Marriner was evident.
“I don’t want to speak about it. I have a very good feeling with Andre Marriner, he is the kind of referee that if he makes mistakes against my team I know that there is no intention.
“He doesn’t want to be the star of the game, he’s an honest man and a good referee. If it was a mistake, I don’t want to say yes or no – I know because I’ve watched it on video a few times – but I don’t want to say because he’s a referee and he’s trying to do his best.”
Asked if Marcus Rashford was to blame for the goal, as he was the one who got beaten before the cross was put in. Mourinho took no time in defending his youngster.
“He’s normal, he’s a young kid, he’s a kid that I put the last minutes on the left side because I know that he has the pace to cope with the aggression of the full back but it can happen, Chamberlain, good player, fast, fresh, and Marcus is not a defender, he was caught in a left-back position.”
He also went on to say how he missed Fellaini on the bench today .
“Then the cross and we don’t have very strong people in the air to cope with the cross and I did not have on the bench a physical player to play like I would. If I had Fellaini I would have played Fellaini for the last 10 or 15 minutes in that area.”
United’s captain for the day was also positive about the shift that the team put in. He felt it was easier to get over the loss where the team performed well than the ones where they are left wondering about how they could have done so much more.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) November 19, 2016
United are missing out on far too many deserved points at the moment and this could cost them very dearly coming end of the season. If they want to make anything of this season, they would have to buckle up and put together a run of consecutive wins to boost their position and also the confidence in the team. This team is lacking just the momentum and the final drive to close the game. But it is already getting too late to turn it around, so sooner Mourinho fixes it, the better it will be for the team and the fans. It has been the story for far too long now. It is good to have dominant performances but it means nothing if they don’t give you all the three points. Hopefully things will get better for the Red Devils as they prepare for very important run of games coming up.