EUROPEAN FOOTBALL

FA Cup final won’t define Manchester United’s season, says Jose Mourinho

United finished second in the Premier League and suffered embarrassing exits from the Champions League and League Cup.

Jose Mourinho insists he won’t regard Manchester United’s season as a failure even if they lose against Chelsea in Saturday’s FA Cup final.

Mourinho’s side have one last chance to finish the campaign with silverware when they face their manager’s former club in a heavyweight Wembley showdown.

United finished second in the Premier League, trailing 19 points behind champions Manchester City, and suffered embarrassing exits from the Champions League and League Cup against Sevilla and Bristol City.

After winning the Europa League and League Cup last term – when they finished sixth in the Premier League – critics claim United have failed to make enough progress this season.

Losing to Chelsea would be a big blow to Mourinho, but he has no intention of letting the result define United’s season.

“You can analyse the way you want and I can analyse the way I want,” Mourinho told reporters at United’s hotel on Friday.

“Of course it makes a difference, but making a difference isn’t to consider whether the season is good or bad from one match.

“When I analyse the work I do, the effort I put, and everything we did in the club, I’m not going to analyse the players because of one, of course very important, match.

“I know what my players did. I know the effort they gave. The positive things, the negative things.

“I’m not going to change my opinion on one match, not at all.”

Mourinho has been slammed for adopting overly cautious tactics in several big games as United were often made to look ponderous in comparison to stylish City’s commitment to attack.

Some fear Mourinho – aiming to win the Cup for the first time since Chelsea beat United in a dull 2007 final – will adopt a conservative approach at Wembley again rather than go on the offensive.

Asked if he felt a duty to ensure the Cup final was a memorable affair for the watching world, the 55-year-old admitted he had a different view than many on what can be considered an entertaining match.

‘Edge of their seats’

“I don’t understand these words, do you think 6-0 is entertaining? I don’t think so,” Mourinho said.

“I think entertaining is emotion until the end, the game open, everyone on the edge of their seats, both dug-outs nervous and tense with the result in doubt.

“For a football lover that is entertaining for me. I think it will be entertaining tomorrow.”

Mourinho has won 12 of his 14 cup finals with Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and United.

His only defeats came in the Portuguese Cup against Benfica and the Copa del Rey against Atletico Madrid.

In contrast, Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has yet to win a domestic cup after losing last season’s FA Cup final against Arsenal.

But Mourinho doesn’t believe that will be a factor this weekend.

“The winning mentality doesn’t have to do with record or history in finals,” he said.

“Honestly, I think what we did in the past has nothing to do with tomorrow.

“The records don’t play tomorrow. It’s 11 against 11.”

The FA Cup will be presented to the winning captain by the wife of former Chelsea and United star Ray Wilkins, who died aged 61 after suffering a cardiac arrest last month.

“It will be a very emotional moment for Mrs Wilkins, for all the family,” Mourinho added.

“I believe that Ray will be looking at it and will be enjoying it.

“I know how much he was loved at Chelsea, I know how much he is loved at Manchester United.

“I think it would be a moment that would unite the stadium, the fans of both colours, a beautiful moment.”

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Get ready for an 80-hour shopping marathon

Here are some tips that’ll help you take the lead.

Starting 16th July at 4:00pm, Flipkart will be hosting its Big Shopping Days sale over 3 days (till 19th July). This mega online shopping event is just what a sale should be, promising not just the best discounts but also buying options such as no cost EMIs, buyback guarantee and product exchanges. A shopping festival this big, packed with deals that you can’t get yourself to refuse, can get overwhelming. So don’t worry, we’re here to tell you why Big Shopping Days is the only sale you need, with these helpful hints and highlights.

Samsung Galaxy On Nxt (64 GB)

A host of entertainment options, latest security features and a 13 MP rear camera that has mastered light come packed in sleek metal unibody. The sale offers an almost 40% discount on the price. Moreover, there is a buyback guarantee which is part of the deal.

Original price: Rs. 17,900

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 10,900

Samsung 32 inches HD Ready LED TV

Another blockbuster deal in the sale catalogue is this audio and visual delight. Apart from a discount of 41%, the deal promises no-cost EMIs up to 12 months.

Original price: Rs. 28,890

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 10,900

Intel Core I3 equipped laptops

These laptops will make a thoughtful college send-off gift or any gift for that matter. Since the festive season is around the corner, you might want to make use of this sale to bring your A-game to family festivities.

Original price: Rs. 25,590

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 21,900

Fashion

If you’ve been planning a mid-year wardrobe refresh, Flipkart’s got you covered. The Big Shopping Days offer 50% to 80% discount on men’s clothing. You can pick from a host of top brands including Adidas and Wrangler.

With more sale hours, Flipkart’s Big Shopping Days sale ensures we can spend more time perusing and purchasing these deals. Apart from the above-mentioned products, you can expect up to 80% discount across categories including mobiles, appliances, electronics, fashion, beauty, home and furniture.

Features like blockbuster deals that are refreshed every 8 hours along with a price crash, rush hour deals from 4-6 PM on the starting day and first-time product discounts makes this a shopping experience that will have you exclaiming “Sale ho to aisi! (warna na ho)”

Set your reminders and mark your calendar, Flipkart’s Big Shopping Days starts 16th July, 4 PM and end on 19th July. To participate in 80 hours of shopping madness, click here.

Play

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Flipkart and not by the Scroll editorial team.