Win Over Burnley Provides Jose Mourinho with Some Wiggle Room
Victory over Burnley has provided Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho with some much-needed breathing space heading into the international break.
The knives were being sharpened following two losses in their opening three games of the season and while they are unlikely to have been stuck back into their block, the blades are out of sight for the moment.
The three points were absolutely vital as they return from the international break with a trip to Watford, who are a perfect four from four following victory over Tottenham Hotspur.
But arguably of as much importance as the three points was the manner of the win. Mourinho has come in for criticism for his sides playing reactive, slow, plodding football. But against Burnley, it was a breath of fresh air as there was dynamism to their play – and it made it clear that the players have not given up on their manager just yet.
Reports swirled last week that some within the United camp felt Mourinho was a dead-man walking, but the team ethic on display at Turf Moor confirmed that to be nothing more than idle chatter.
Mourinho is clearly not concerned by talk about his future.
“They say I’m in danger, but I don’t think so,” he told Italian newspaper La Repubblica (h/t the Mirror). “If they sent me away, do you have any idea how much money they would have to give me?”
It was a tongue-in-cheek response from Mourinho, but it was clearly from a person who is confident in his surroundings.
There’s no denying that United are well below the level of Manchester City, and are probably a step or two behind Liverpool and Chelsea, but the gloom that descended on the club following the loss to Tottenham can quickly be lifted with a run of decent results.
Following the trip to Watford, United entertain Wolverhampton Wanderers, travel to bottom of the table West Ham United and host Newcastle United. Mourinho’s side would start favourite in all those games, and a 12-point haul would paint the manager in a different light.
Talk of a title tilt is probably as wild as reports of the Portuguese being one game from the sack. United’s position is somewhere in the middle of those two.
With that in mind, the confident among Manchester United supporters could be of a mind to take a look at 188BET’s market for a place in the Premier League’s top four. United are currently 2.50, but that price would disappear were the Red Devils to hit the ground running after the international break.
It’s not sunshine and roses at Old Trafford, but neither is it doom and gloom either.
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