Jose Mourinho was always ahead of his time. Known as ‘The Special One’ by his ardent fans around the globe might not be a tactical king, but he has always been a great reader of the game and situation.
Recently a clip from 2017 has gone viral across social media platforms, where Mourinho can be seen being very particular about the then-Manchester United youngsters Marcus Rashford and Antony Martial. The clip has been taken from a post-match interview between Manchester United and Brighton where the Red Devils went down by a solitary goal during a Premier League encounter.
Red Devils have not been doing well in their recent matches hence adding a twist to Mourino’s six-year-old comments regarding Martial and Rashford. He was seen expressing his anger following the match against Brighton where Martial and Rashford had played instead of Romelu Lukaku and Alexi Sanchez.
Jose Mourinho said this about Rashford and Martial 6 years ago. 6 YEARS AGO.
They’re still shit. pic.twitter.com/8MXukYZH0J
— Martien 🇳🇱 (@MartienBall) December 3, 2023
In the video, Mourinho addressed the criticism he faced for always choosing Lukaku over Martial and Rashford. He highlighted the struggles of the latter two players in a particular game and questioned their commitment when United needed points for a top-two finish in the league. “People always ask me: ‘Why always Lukaku?’ you know why now,” Mourinho stated.
The lack of consistency in their performance shown by Martial and Rashford has brought back Mourinho’s old comments into the spotlight. Mourinho’s two-and-a-half-year tenure at Manchester United has been met with both success and controversy. He led the team to two major trophies and a second-place finish in the 2017-2018 season, which he described as one of his best achievements, given the squad’s quality at the time.
Jose Mourinho’s 4-year-old statement on playing Marcus Rashford as a number 9
England International, Marcus Rashford hasn’t had half of his form which he had last season. Playing as a number 9 last season under Erik ten Hag, Rashford was instrumental in Manchester United’s somewhat successful season. However, things didn’t go as he would have liked this season.
Erik ten Hag’s tactics are in question after he continued playing Rashford as the number 9 due to injuries to Martial and Hojlund from the beginning of the season.
After Rashford’s serious drop in form this season, Mourinho’s 2019 comments have started to resurface. Mourinho stated back then that Rashford was not suited to play as the center striker for Manchester United.
— Steph Skillz MUFC (@StephTalksMUFC) August 15, 2023
Mourinho stated, “For me, he is potentially a very good player, he is a very good player in some models of play, he is a very good player in some positions. As a target man or as a No.9 I don’t think he has these 30 goals which a top striker has.
“For me who can’t get better as a No.9. For me, he can get better and better and better playing the way they did today – playing from the left side. But, playing as the target man in matches for Manchester United [he needs to be] dominant and playing against defensive teams, against low blocks, I think it is difficult for him,” added the current Roma manager.
Rashford has only scored a couple of games this season from 13 Premier League appearances for the Red Devils. It is for certain, that if Rashford fails to bring back his form from last season, he will eventually end up losing his place to Alejandro Garnacho.