Jose Mourinho believes that Manchester United have what it takes to win the Premier League title this season.
The Portuguese, in his first season at Old Trafford, only managed sixth spot – 24 points behind champions Chelsea – after failing to take care of lesser sides at home and prioritising winning the Europa League by April.
And Mourinho, speaking ahead of his side’s Premier League opener against West Ham, noted that his side has what it takes to challenge for the title.
“What it means for me to be the Premier League champion? I think it’s the objective of every one of the top teams and every one of the top team managers,” he said.
“Yes, we can (win the title), Europa League is not Champions League, obviously it is more difficult to win the Champions League than the Europa League but also motivation is higher, also my hard work last season to motivate the Europa League with ambition and commitment and responsibility, my work was hard at that level.
“This season, in relation to the Champions League, it is not hard to motivate them against the top teams, I don’t need to work at that level, so the motivation is more than enough.
“And the Premier League is what you all know, I would say seven teams to fight for the title and 20 teams to fight every week for every match, different than any of the other leagues. I worked in three other leagues apart from the English one and every opponent gives you a hard time but we are involved in four competitions.”
A lot of people have told me that United will win the Premier League this season. The general feeling is that the two Manchester clubs will compete for the top prize, but I remain cautious at this prognosis.
This is, after all, what the majority thought this time last year. Predicting even a general outcome of a full-blooded, ever-changing, quickly inflating, probably-more-corrupt-than-we-think-but-still-the-best-show-on-earth 38-game marathon is an impossible task.
As Mourinho notes, seven teams can contest the title, but predicting much more than that is pointless.
Thankfully, the chit-chat now stops, and we can now watch on as the newest version of the best league in the world clinks into drive mode.