Paul Pogba has insisted that the confidence levels at Manchester United are notably higher than last season following his side’s 4-0 win over Swansea City in the Premier League.
The Frenchman set the wheels in motion for a comfortable victory with a header that struck the bar before being poked home by Eric Bailly on the stroke of half time.
He then turned up the heat with ten minutes left as the hosts begun to tire, claiming Man United’s third with a sublime chip before setting up Anthony Martial to put the final nail in Swansea’s coffin.
And Pogba, speaking after the game, noted that greater chemistry exists between the players following a productive pre-season.
“We are more confident (than last season),” he said.
“We know each other more. We work for each other and I think that is easier for us. We want to carry on on this road.”
Mourinho spoke about “letting the horses run freely” at the Liberty Stadium – a stark contrast to the angry dinner lady rhetoric of Louis van Gaal – and you could see the benefits of this mindset oozing from every player.
The Portuguese has created a dressing room environment bereft of conflict and animosity – a rarity when you put 25 men in the same room. He trusts his players and wants them to express themselves on the pitch. And in turn they take responsibility: the fact that a variety of players have already scored this season suggests that there exists an element of friendly competition amongst players – a desire to make their own mark rather than hoping somebody else does.
There is still a long way to go, but nobody can doubt that Mourinho’s men are in perfect harmony during the early stages of the season.