Jose Mourinho has claimed that it isn’t easy to be motivated on Manchester United’s “strange” pre-season tour of the USA.
Man United have been training at the state-of-the-art facilities at UCLA over the past week and have played two friendlies so far, drawing both in rather uninspiring fashion.
Juan Mata won Man of the Match and netted a 78th-minute equaliser to draw 1-1 with Club America in Pheonix on Friday morning before United played out a 0-0 stalemate with MLS strugglers San Jose Earthquakes in Santa Clara on Sunday night.
Speaking to MUTV after full-time at Levi’s Stadium on Sunday, Mourinho bemoaned the number of key players absent from his squad despite the chance it has given the club’s young stars.
“For me is a very strange pre-season. Pre-season, you try to be motivated and motivate the people around you but is not easy. I did some pre-season with some players but to have ten players away is very strange.”
“The motivation is to try to train the best we can, to give the players minutes, to give young players an opportunity to develop and that’s it.”
Trio David de Gea, Nemanja Matic and new £52m signing Fred are expected to link up with the squad in America this week, with Matic already in Los Angeles, but there will still be plenty of stars unavailable until the latter stages of pre-season.
United participate in the International Champions Cup, facing AC Milan, Liverpool and Real Madrid before travelling to the Allianz Arena for a final friendly contest against Bayern Munich.