Martin Keown: Jose Mourinho confused his Manchester United players

by Marwan Harraz

Jose Mourinho confused his Manchester United players by pulling up the handbrake when the club was flying at the start of the season according to Martin Keown.

The Red Devils began their second campaign under Mourinho in fine form, blowing away teams and keeping up with fierce rivals Manchester City as both sides attempted to set the tone.

The Sky Blues though eventually carried on their form but United stuttered and now find themselves 15 points behind the league leaders.

Although it is still December, many neutrals have concluded that the Premier League title is all but City’s with Pep Guardiola’s men unlikely to drop that many points.

Keown believes he can pin-point the exact moment Jose’s side lost their momentum and why they’ve failed to recover since.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Martin said: “Manchester United’s problems this season stem from their 0-0 draw with Liverpool in October.

“Then, United were flying. They were a juggernaut at full speed. All of a sudden, Mourinho pulled up the handbrake.

“At that point Liverpool were very vulnerable but Mourinho seemed happy to settle for a draw. It meant that in the next game, against Huddersfield, the United players were confused and lost 2-1.

“Some of what Mourinho says is petulant and there is a danger that the players can become a reflection of their manager.

“Now, he seems to be watching from the bench in a disdainful manner. At Chelsea, Mourinho lost the players. It is crucial that he does not lose belief in his squad now.”

Manchester United were heavily criticised for their result vs Liverpool and fans were unhappy with how they failed to truly test the Reds leaky defence.

Jose Mourinho’s defensive style caused uproar amongst United fans who believed the club had what it takes to take the game to Jurgen Klopp’s men.

Other supporters justified the Portuguese manager’s decisions due to Paul Pogba’s absence for the heavily anticipated match.

The star Frenchman had succumbed to injury ahead of the clash with Liverpool and so Mourinho opted to play with a more reserved tactic.

United’s fine start to the season was put down to Pogba’s outstanding performances in his second season at Old Trafford.

It was clear for all to see what the former Juventus man offers to Jose’s side and how he brought out the best out of his teammates.

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