Former Liverpool midfielder Jamie Redknapp does not believe Jose Mourinho has what it takes to turn things around at Manchester United this season.
The 55-year-old cut a gloomy, petulant figure over pre-season and new signings after Fred failed to arrive, and that mood has percolated into the new campaign.
A miserable 3-2 defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion followed by a 3-0 loss at home to Tottenham Hotspur has heaped enormous pressure on Mourinho, who at this point retains the backing of the board.
Speaking earlier this week, Redknapp noted he could not see Mourinho turning the club’s dour situation around.
“You can turn round and say, ‘let’s give him time, let’s give him until the end of his contract’, but you’re damaging a brand here,” he said.
“I just don’t see how he can turn this around.
“That’s not because I think Jose Mourinho is not a good manager, I just don’t think he’s the right manager for Manchester United.
“I don’t think his style fits, and he’s never looked happy there.”
It can feel good – nay, necessary – to create a positive angle in these dark times. Some pointed at Mourinho staying behind to applaud the Stretford End after Spurs. Some point at the performance itself, which was miles better than Brighton. Others look towards Mourinho’s fighting talk, or perhaps the innate quality in this team. There are always straws to grasp at.
But there is also a grim reality we have to confront. Since January, when Mourinho’s attacking momentum and balance disappeared with the signing of Alexis Sanchez, United have encountered a downward spiral – losing steam in the Premier League, losing the FA Cup final, losing the transfer window, and now losing their ability to hold firm, to win games.
You cannot help but sense where this current situation is heading.