Jose Mourinho applauded the unity his Manchester United team displayed despite succumbing to a 3-0 defeat at home to Tottenham on Monday.
United produced a significantly better performance at Old Trafford than they managed in the 3-2 defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion last time out, but they came up against a side ready to punish any signs of weakness.
Spurs quickly established a 2-0 lead early in the second half through Harry Kane and Lucas Moura, with the Brazilian adding his second late on to seal the biggest home loss of Mourinho’s managerial career.
United’s defence looked particularly shaky throughout, with Phil Jones struggling before picking up an injury, but Mourinho refused to attack the club’s hierarchy again for not providing him with centre-back reinforcements in pre-season.
“The market is closed, no market until January,” he told Sky Sports. “What I have to say about that I told and I don’t say one more word about that.
“I just think if anyone that watches this game, and many thousands of our fans look to the game, the one thing they know for sure is the team is united.
“The team doesn’t play like that, give everything like that, if they aren’t united.
“The team who fights the way they did, showing the empathy and solidarity between players, the dignity to play together for Manchester United and lose at home, of course is difficult for anyone, but it’s clear they are united. There is no union without the manager.”
And Mourinho was eager to salute the general performance, convinced United only looked beaten when Spurs added their late third.
“The team was playing to change the result, until it was 2-0,” said Mourinho. “We were playing for that and creating enough for that.
“I’m not saying that with a goal we’d win, but we were very much in the game. Only the 3-0 goal smashed the mentality of the team.
“Even still, I saw Luke Shaw at 3-0 having cramps and staying in the game until the end, with that dignity the fans like.”