Jose Mourinho has hit out at Manchester United supporters for failing to generate an atmosphere during his side’s 2-0 win over Huddersfield Town.
A minute’s silence was observed ahead of the game as Old Trafford paused to remember those who tragically lost their lives in the Munich air disaster 60 years ago.
And a largely placid crowd watched on as Man United, following a difficult first half, finally got past Huddersfield through Romelu Lukaku.
Speaking after the game, Mourinho noted that Old Trafford lacked a considerable amount of noise throughout.
Mourinho said Old Trafford was 'quiet' again and 'it is not very, very enthusiastic'. Said atmosphere from when he was Chelsea manager at Portsmouth was 'incredible'. #mufc
— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) February 3, 2018
The 55-year-old’s point is slightly more nuanced than simply asserting that United’s support isn’t noisy enough.
His mention of Fratton Park, home of Portsmouth, underlines the point he is trying to make: that higher capacity does not equate to a better atmosphere.
If anything, the spaciousness of Old Trafford – the way the whole place echoes and dissects, rather than centralises, sound produced by supporters – renders it somewhat ghostlike in comparison to some of the more intimate, compact lower league grounds. It can often feel like the place is divided into several distinct parts.
And this has always been true of football grounds. Honestly, if you want to have a genuine ‘fan’ experience, forget Old Trafford and indeed most Premier League stadiums.