Anthony Martial has insisted that Manchester United are enjoying football under Jose Mourinho, pointing towards the serial winning mentality brought by the Portuguese since his arrival over the summer.
The 54-year-old has come under scrutiny from some sectors of the footballing world for failing to dismiss lesser sides at Old Trafford this season, with such a malaise leaving Man United in sixth spot in the Premier League.
However, in spite of United’s place in the table, the club board has expressed plenty of optimism with regard to the improved style of play invoked by Mourinho this year.
And Martial, speaking to the club’s official website, was quick to make note of the positive mindset invoked by the Portuguese since replacing Louis van Gaal.
“I think we are a lot more compact,” he said.
“Much more solid. We’re enjoying our football and we always go out to win, and are determined that we’re not going to lose. I think that’s where our strength is coming from this season.”
Mourinho, when asked back in the summer about his initial impressions of the United squad, noted that he has inherited a ‘sad’ group of players. And understandably so. The last nine months under Van Gaal, in spite of its glorious ending, had been hell for all involved: players, supporters, the board, and probably even most of the managerial team had descended into a state of ennui, forced to uphold a style – and indeed an entire mentality – that nobody really understood or believed in.
Dragging the first team out of that trauma was always going to be a sticky process, but Mourinho has set the ball rolling through making it clear to every member of the squad that, as United players, they are expected to win with style and conviction, and supporters have duly responded to the shift in mood around Old Trafford.