Chris Smalling: Manchester United suffering from a lack of confidence

Mental Mourinho!- Jose goes berserk as late Fellaini UCL winner sends Man United through

Mental Mourinho!- Jose goes berserk as late Fellaini UCL winner sends Man United through

However, Mourinho knocked back suggestions his players find it easier to play away and laughed off a suggestion that playing at Old Trafford brought added pressure ahead of facing the Swiss champions.

Never one of my teams stayed in the group phase.

"In this case, we have the best goalkeeper in the world and I know that he wants to stay".

Mourinho made his frustration known by letting out an undoubtedly cathartic cheer, jumping and fist-pumping the air, just as any manager celebrating a last minute victor would.

It was an important win for Jose Mourinho's side, who have now booked their place in the knockout stages of the competition.

"But really I had a conversation with the coach about it and I said: 'Listen, it's been a long year and also with the World Cup, I felt a bit exhausted'".

"Frustration, I was not unhappy with the players, not at all, frustrated we couldn't score, yes, but my players were very exhausted in end and that's what I love, it means they gave everything".


It wasn't just about United's late victor.

"Let me send a message to my lovers and let me say that I've played Champions League for 14 years and I've qualified 14 times", the Portuguese told his post-match press conference. "And the year where I didn't play Champions League I won the Europa League twice".

"I would say if we have him for the Christmas period - where we need, if possible, every player to be available for that hard period until the Newcastle match on January 2 - if we can have Victor available for that period, it will be good".

Nemanja Matic and Fred held the midfield with Fellaini ahead of them, the role he played for Everton.

Mourinho made the bold decision to leave Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku on the bench and Alexis Sanchez out of his squad completely among six changes from a drab 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday, but it largely backfired as United failed to impress once more.

"What he said the other day, that was more a generational thing".

Sixty-three minutes in, there was tepid applause when Jesse Lingard came off for Lukaku, the same when Pogba replaced Fred seconds later. He knows that the win takes the heat off United and him, but not much.

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