Swansea (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Jose Mourinho has taken a swipe at the Manchester United players he fears might not have the right attitude to guide his side back into the Premier League title race.
Mourinho saw first half goals from Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba help United to only a second league victory in eight games as his side cruised to a 3-1 success at Swansea on Sunday.
However, in the wake of the win, Mourinho spoke openly about the need for players to play through the injury pain barrier.
“We have players with problems, but we also have players on the pitch who have problems,” he said.
“And that is what I mean, because in every sport, and I know that because I have friends from other sports, playing at the highest level. How many times do they play when they are not 100 per cent?
“I have a friend who is a big tennis player and he tells me that he remembers more times when he has played with pain than the times he has played without any pain. To compete, you have to work to the limits.
“It is a cultural thing, for some. That’s not my culture.”
Asked if players needed to change to play for him, Mourinho said; “Exactly, but more than me, Man United. More than me, Man United.”
Despite Mourinho’s blast, he could have no complaints about the overall United performance on Sunday.
“After the draw against Burnley we needed points,” he said.
“We put in a great performance against Burnley, but only came away with one point. We needed three points today, more than the performance. But we got both.
“Zlatan does not lack confidence. I used to say that a striker who doesn’t score goals and does nothing else, means you have one player less.
“A striker who doesn’t score goals, but does everything else, is a very important player for the team. When Zlatan was not scoring goals, he was doing everything else.
“He was working defensively, he was working in the build up, he was giving assists and he was contributing towards the fact that the goalkeepers who played against us were the man of the match.
“So, he was doing so many things that I was not worried. Today we needed goals to win and we got them.”
– Calling the tune –
While Ibrahimovic was calling the tune in the final third, it was veteran Michael Carrick who was dictating the pace of the game in front of his back four.