Jose Mourinho Says Manchester United's Attitude Was 'Poor' vs. Huddersfield

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistOctober 21, 2017

HUDDERSFIELD, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21: Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho reacts during the Premier League match between Huddersfield Town and Manchester United at John Smith's Stadium on October 21, 2017 in Huddersfield, England. (Photo by Chris Brunskill Ltd/Getty Images)
Chris Brunskill Ltd/Getty Images

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has questioned the attitude showcased by his players in the surprise 2-1 loss against Huddersfield Town in the Premier League on Saturday.

The Red Devils were well below their best, and the defeat allowed Manchester City to take a five-point lead at the top of the table after they beat Burnley 3-0 on the same day.

After the match, Mourinho held nothing back in his assessment of the commitment on display, per Kris Voakes of Goal:

After a sluggish beginning to the match from both teams, an injury to Phil Jones unsettled United, with Victor Lindelof coming on and struggling in place of the England international.

Following the change, Huddersfield netted twice in quick succession through Aaron Mooy and Laurent Depoitre. United sought to battle back in the second period, though they failed to build on Marcus Rashford's header 12 minutes from time.

HUDDERSFIELD, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21:  Aaron Mooy of Huddersfield Town celebrates as he scores their first goal during the Premier League match between Huddersfield Town and Manchester United at John Smith's Stadium on October 21, 2017 in Huddersfield, Engl
Gareth Copley/Getty Images

Mourinho did admit that Huddersfield, celebrating their first win over the Red Devils since 1952, were well worth their victory on the day, per Match of the Day's Gary Lineker:

"Maybe in the second half we wanted it a little more and maybe we could get a draw, but I honestly think we deserved the punishment of the defeat," the United boss also said, per BBC Sport.

Having drawn against Liverpool last weekend and battled to a 1-0 win over Benfica in midweek in the UEFA Champions League, United had appeared defensively robust.

But there were no signs of that cohesion in the first half. The first two goals came about after errors from Juan Mata and Lindelof, respectively, with the former giving the ball away cheaply in midfield and the latter getting caught under a long ball forward.

Mourinho was asked about those mistakes, though he declined the chance to single out any individuals among this poor display:

"I don't know why [Huddersfield] wanted it more," he added, per BBC Sport. "I won't be critical of my players in the media. I will analyse the game and, if I need to, I will criticise them."

HUDDERSFIELD, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21: Jose Mourinho the head coach / manager of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Huddersfield Town and Manchester United at John Smith's Stadium on October 21, 2017 in Huddersfield, England. (Photo by
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

For a team that has been so focused and decisive in their play in 2017-18 up until this week, this recent lull in attacking spark will be concerning for the manager, as will the confusion that infected the defensive play on Saturday.

There is a chance for United to respond quickly in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday at Swansea City. Following that encounter, they'll begin a tricky run of fixtures against Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea in the Premier League either side of another meeting with Benfica in the Champions League. 

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