Jose Mourinho has made a sly attack on Manchester United’s home support in Tuesday night’s matchday programme for a UEFA Champions League clash against Benfica.
The Portuguese has recently criticised sections of Man United’s support for not showing enough faith in Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku.
Apparently, some Reds booed Mourinho’s decision to substitute Anthony Martial on for Marcus Rashford in Saturday afternoon’s 1-0 victory against Tottenham Hotspur, though many in the ground said they heard nothing of the sort.
Many United fans have been disappointed not to see Rashford and Martial playing together much this season, though there are obvious reasons why.
Mourinho wrote in his programme notes on Tuesday, “I hope that you enjoy the game more than some of you did against Tottenham.”
It’s an obvious swipe at United’s support, who he has previously attacked. Last season, he said at one point, “I do hope our noisy supporters are back from their holidays for today’s match. I want the lads to enjoy a supportive atmosphere at all our home games.”
The atmosphere at Old Trafford has decline over the last two decades, but was seen to be fairly good for the win against Spurs. However, in the Champions League tonight under the floodlights Old Trafford will always be bouncing and a win will take Man United one step closer to knockout rounds of Europe’s elite competition. Check out the numbers behind the Champions League final.
Mourinho could alienate some fans if he continues to attack the fans, while simultaneously declaring that they can do whatever they like because they have paid for the ticket.
He appears to counter his own points at times, and it’s not sensible to create a divide between the manager and the supporters. However, some sections at Old Trafford do need to be louder. Fans shouldn’t come to games to sit on their hands in silence until a goal goes in, with the occasional chant of ‘United’.
If Mourinho can help to change that, that’ll be fantastic.