Jose Mourinho has laid a great deal of blame for Manchester United’s 3-1 defeat to West Ham United upon refereeing mistakes.
After a truly woeful display from his side, Mourinho still pointed out that two of the Hammers’ goals had come after dubious decisions. Felipe Anderson gave the hosts the lead at the London Stadium after arriving from an offside position, but the linesman failed to spot that.
Later, after United had grabbed a goal back to take the score back to 2-1 through Marcus Rashford, Marko Arnautovic slipped through Man United’s defence after Pablo Zabaleta had pushed Rashford over to win the ball and start the move.
Yet West Ham were more than deserving of their victory, and the scoreline did not flatter them. United were terrible, and Mourinho used his classic deflectionary tactics by referring to those errors, as well as the second goal for West Ham, an own goal from United defender Victor Lindelof.
“I think a team that comes with that mental fragility of the [recent] bad result [in midweek against Derby], coming here and after 5 minutes is losing 1-0… it’s not the best way to start,” Mourinho told BT Sport.
“An offside goal, though. A goal that last Tuesday [in the League Cup] with the VAR wouldn’t be a goal.
“But no VAR and obviously the linesman’s mistake means it’s a goal.”
Mourinho went on to mention further mistakes from the officials in a very deliberated manner. His aim was obvious, and it’s tiresome for United fans to be bored by this response to defeats every time.
“In the first half we had a reaction, we had a good reaction,” Mourinho continued. “But an own goal makes it 2-0. We are not aggressive and intense enough to close that shot down.
“[In the] second half we took a little bit of time to react but then we did. The goalkeeper made a couple of good saves.
“[In the build-up to the third goal], there is a foul on Marcus Rashford. Zabaleta doesn’t have an attempt to play the ball. The third goal kills the game.”
It was one of a number of things that Mourinho said post-match. Yet it remains a dull point to make. Yes, the first goal was offside and the deflection off Lindelof for the second goal was unfortunate. The third goal was a contentious decision, but no United fan could possibly argue that their team deserved more from Saturday’s fixture.