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Mkhitaryan found it difficult on the sidelines; vowed ‘this is a new start’

Manchester United beat Feyenoord 4-0 at Old Trafford on Thursday night in the UEFA Europa League in a convincing display, something which has been present over the last few matches, with results dampening down the performances. This shows that United are improving, and this display will only add confidence, meaning United will be hungry to perform and put chase on their rivals, something which Jose Mourinho has instilled at the club. Injuries have been costly, but in a way they have also allowed both Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo to show the manager what they can do, and over the last three matches, they have done well, considering. Henrikh Mkhitaryan was named the Man of the Match after a great performance in his first start since September, Wayne Rooney also scored his 39th European goal for the club, and coming within one goal of matching Sir Bobby Charlton’s goalscoring record at the club.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan speaking about being back in the team and taking chances:

“It was a pleasure to play again and to start the game. I’ve tried to do my best and I think it’s a very good result for the team.

“It was very difficult to watch the team playing from the side but you have to have passion and to work hard and try to take your next chance.

“I hope [this is a new start], let’s see.”

Wayne Rooney on his recent media slating, his goal, his record and the team performance:

“I think all that’s created by people like yourself asking questions now when people in the media are making a big deal over nothing.

“I didn’t actually even step foot into the wedding, I think it’s a shame I’m having to talk about it now after such a great victory.

“It was a good win, a 4-0 victory, we’re pleased we got four goals, I think the second goal killed the game. At 1-0 you never know what can happen so the second goal killed them off, we got a couple more goals and overall played some really good stuff.

“It’s a great feeling obviously to score goals and score goals for this club. I’m pleased, I’m sure there are more to come, I’m happy with the win first of all but also the goal.”

Jose Mourinho on Manchester United’s biggest victory during his reign of the club:

“I think it was a similar performance to the others we had at home we were dominant we controlled the first game to the last but this time we scored goals.

“People like him [Rooney] don’t need to answer anymore, just need to enjoy a few more years of his career and playing the best he can, which is what he tries to do.

“But more important than that is we just need one more point to qualify.”

Mourinho on the overall reflections of the victory:

“Yeah I’m happy, this was a performance and a result. I was saying before the match, performance without result is not good but gives you a future. A bad performance with a good result is a happy moment but it’s just a happy moment, not a happy future. And this time they played very well again with goals and it’s important for us because we always said since day one we want to do well in the Europa League. We were in a position of needing four points and now we need just one.”

Mourinho on Wayne Rooney’s European record:

“I didn’t know that [about the record]. And more important than that is the three points that we need and the performance of the team but I think when you make history it’s always beautiful, just beautiful details in your career and in this case for Wayne it’s fantastic.”

Mourinho on the return of Henrikh Mkhitaryan:

“The reception [from the fans] he deserved because he played very well. Always improving, improving, improving, improving until the moment he was really tired and I felt it was the right moment to take him off and to let him come off with a very good performance. It was important for his confidence and he will try to keep adapting and trying to replicate this kind of quality performance in the Premier League which is a competition with different difficulties.”

Mourinho on being spoilt for choice in defence, presumably after injuries:

“The problem is [more] when you are in trouble to choose. Like when I had Phil Jones injured and Marcos Rojo injured, Smalling injured and Bailly injured, that was a big, big, big problem so [selection dilemmas] are good problems.”

Mourinho on his Manchester United side facing West Ham United twice in four days:

“Honestly I don’t like it, I never like it. It has happened to me many times in my career and it’s something that I think is not good. But we have to just forget the second game and focus on the first one and go step by step.”

United have a big match on Sunday, in which they will be looking to get back to winning ways in the Premier League against West Ham United, then against the following Wednesday in the EFL Cup, where United will be looking to put themselves into the latter stages of the domestic competition, keeping their options open for the remainder of the season, seemingly with the Premier League out of reach, for now at least. With many matches still to play and form of clubs changing, as it does over the course of the season, United, providing they get into good form, push their opposition and grind the victories, could well get up there with their rivals and contend for the title this season, although that being more of a pipe dream right now. United are heading in the right direction.

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