Jose Mourinho’s stint as Manchester United manager has been a rollercoaster ride so far.
A strong start was followed by months of inconsistency and poor results, both in the Premier League and Europa League.
Recently, though, the Red Devils appeared to have turned a corner and are currently on a run of nine games without defeat. That hasn’t stopped Mourinho returning to one of the favourite things he likes to complain about.
Speaking ahead of United’s Saturday fixture against West Brom, the Portuguese was discussing the Red Devils’ congested run of fixtures recently that has seen them play three games in the space of six days.
And, as you might expect given that he has complained about similar issues stretching back to original stint at Chelsea, he isn’t impressed with the way United have been treated by the FA.
He even seemed to suggest United’s arch rivals Liverpool have been getting preferential treatment when it comes to being able to keep their players fresh and avoid fatigue.
“It is quite difficult to explain,” he began. “But when I see City vs Arsenal on the Sunday and Liverpool-Everton on Monday, and Liverpool and Everton are not involved in any European…
“And Manchester United plays in Ukraine on Thursday. Two days later plays in the Premier League against Tottenham. And, two days later, play against Crystal Palace. And, two days later, play against West Brom… it is a bit difficult to understand.”
Whilst some may argue Mourinho is simply playing mind games yet again, he might have a point on this issue.
When United kick off against West Brom today it will be their fourth game in nine days and they’ll have had to negotiate a long trip to the Ukraine in that span.
Meanwhile, Liverpool’s past four fixtures (including the game against Everton on Monday) will have come over a 15-day span.
Given the congested nature of fixtures over the festive period, it isn’t exactly ideal preparation as Mourinho and co. attempt to maintain their decent form heading into the new year.
Of course, there will be those who will argue that, given just how much money United have spent to assemble their squad in recent years, they should have enough players capable of filling in when Mourinho needs to rotate the starting XI to keep things fresh.