Blind struck it hard and well to double Man United’s lead in 2-0 victory against Benfica on Tuesday night, but only after Ander Herrera had taken the ball off striker Lukaku, and then Blind had taken it off him.
The whole situation was baffling for supporters watching at Old Trafford and on BT, but Mourinho told BT Sport after the game that it was his decision to make Blind take the spot-kick.
“Yep. No, the reason is Martial was the player to take he took he missed he wasn’t even on the pitch and then the players were happy to take the responsibility,” Mourinho began explaining.
“Romelu was happy to take it and so was Herrera but my decision was Blind.
“We train and I analyse and try to make the right decision.
“Martial didn’t miss one in the last three days. But he missed. Sometimes the choice in the wrong one. Daley was my choice.”
It proved a good decision with Blind having no problems converting from 12 yards, but some were confused as to why Lukaku did not take it.
The Belgian is United’s top goalscorer and main attacking man, and furthermore he is on a minor goal drought. This is his longest spell without a goal in 18 months, and he could have done with a boost of a return to the scoresheet via a penalty.
That opportunity wasn’t afforded to him, though, firstly with Herrera stepping in and then Blind overriding the pair of them with instructions from Mourinho.