Phil Jones has admitted that Manchester United’s performance against Chelsea in the FA Cup final last month was “crap”.
The Englishman, having been caught in a terrible position, brought down Eden Hazard in the first half and the Belgian put Chelsea ahead from the spot.
Man United dominated the ball thereafter but, once again, never looked as if they would force the game into extra time.
And Jones, reflecting on that May afternoon, emphasised that he simply had to move on from what was a grim day for Jose Mourinho‘s men.
“It was c**p,” Jones said. “But that’s football. These things happen and you move on. You have to, because I can’t sit on my arse and dwell on it for weeks and weeks and weeks. I’d be ready to jump off a bridge if I thought like that.”
“It was disappointing – gutted. But these things happen. Some get highlighted more than others but I’m used to it now and I like to think I’m wise enough and experienced enough to deal with it.”
With the World Cup in full swing and club football feeling like something of a distant relic of the past, looking back to that final will make every United fan wince. Not having to think about United, and specifically the machinations of Mourinho, for a few weeks has been quite nice.
And that, really, is the most damning indictment of all for Mourinho. Many would have deemed United’s season a success had they triumphed at Wembley, just like how winning the Europa League justified finishing sixth the season before.
But to boil the measure of a season’s success down to one game misses the overall picture. The problems which emerged over the season would have still been there. The issue regarding Anthony Martial would still be the same. That same feeling of deflation in response to the football put on show by Mourinho would not have been any difference.
All of us, put simply, would be happy to welcome the World Cup and forget about the nature of United’s football over the last nine months – regardless of whether the season ended with or without trophies.