Jose Mourinho has insisted that Manchester United’s next to games are of far more importance to him than Saturday’s recent clash with Liverpool.
The Portuguese boss was delighted to guide Man United to a fantastic 2-1 win against Liverpool in the 200th ever competitive meeting between the sides. Marcus Rashford scored twice in the space of 15 minutes in the first half and Mourinho’s tactics were spot on.
However, with a UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie second leg against Sevilla on Tuesday, and then an FA Cup quarter-final against Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday, Mourinho insists the Liverpool must now be put well in the past.
Mourinho argued the great result against Liverpool would be meaningless if United don’t win their next two games.
“Liverpool is Liverpool, it is a big match,” Mourinho said. “But Sevilla and Brighton are ‘live or die’ games so the next two are much more important than this one.”
“In modern football you have to live day-by-day, week-by week and match-by-match and I can imagine that if we lose against Sevilla on Tuesday everyone will have forgotten what we did in the last couple of weeks.”
While beating rivals Liverpool is satisfying, it only ensures United stay second. That’s important, but nothing like as important to the club’s season as whether they progress in the Champions League and in the Cup.
Criticism will be huge if Mourinho fails to guide United through this Sevilla tie, and so he’s right.
“We have beaten Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool – only City we have not beaten in the current top six – but that means nothing because, in football these days, you have to prove it every day,” Mourinho continued, arguing, as always, that his team are not given enough credit in the media.