7 Oct 2018

Mourinho claims he's focus of 'manhunt'

12:46 pm on 7 October 2018

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has claimed after the 3-2 home victory over Newcastle that he's the subject of a "manhunt".

Man United manager Jose Mourinho

Man United manager Jose Mourinho Photo: Offside Sports Photography

Mourinho says he may have been convinced he was set for the sack if he hadn't received a text message on the morning of the game from the United board that told him to "ignore what you are going to read and do your job".

Before Saturday's Premier League match at Old Trafford, senior figures at the club strongly denied a report from the previous evening the Portuguese would lose his job this weekend regardless of the outcome of the contest.

United then claimed victory thanks to a late fightback, with Juan Mata netting a 70th-minute free kick, Anthony Martial equalising six minutes later and Alexis Sanchez heading home the winner in the 90th minute.

After seeing the Red Devils end their four-game losing streak in all competitions, Mourinho told BT Sport 1: "In spite of the first time I see in football a manhunt, I am 55, I am mature, I can cope with it. I can live with it.

"Clearly some of the boys, in spite of their not being the man that is hunted, I think they are not coping well with it. The way they start the game was absolutely panicking.

He said the players made mistakes that weren't normal.

"I think at halftime we had a good conversation. We didn't promise to each other we would win the match, we promised we would give absolutely everything without fear. They gave everything," Mourinho said.

In an interview with talkSPORT, Mourinho said: "When I woke up in the morning I had an SMS from my board to say ignore what you are going to read and do your job but if I didn't have that SMS I could be also convinced (by the report)."

In his post-match media conference, Mourinho expressed his gratitude to the United fans at the ground, describing them as "absolutely amazing".

Having heard boos around the stadium at halftime, Mourinho then heard his name being sung loudly following Sanchez's goal.

He said when asked about his "manhunt" comments that "it doesn't stop" and he felt nothing would stop it.