Manchester United is normally seen as one of those strong, efficient teams that always fights till the end, keeps their fans with high hopes and gives the very best they have got. A Goliath of sorts, if you will. Well, it seems this Goliath has met his David in-house: Mourinho.
A shocking goal by Anderson de Espuela, followed by two goals by Andriy Yarmolenko and Marko Arnautovic, gave West Ham a striking victory on Manchester United (3-1) and confirmed our fears: Mourinho and his team are going downhill, and their brakes broke. Their previous defeat against Derby County, a second division team, was a bloody disgrace, and far from “awakening” the team, this loss seems to have tossed the “Red Devils” into a lethargy, redefining the team as a sloppy, simple and a witless one.
From the beginning of the match, they were overpowered by a dominating West Ham, tying their hands and winning terrain, led by the (most superior) couple Yarmolenko and Marko Arnautovic, who was able to exploit all weaknesses and opportunities given by Manchester’s central players.
Neither Victor Lindelof, who came into the field called by Mourinho himself, at minute 56, nor Chris Smalling were enough to stand their ground to the Ukrainian-Austrian duo. Not even Luke Shaw was up to the task, his side was the first to fall to the West Ham’s offensive play.
Minute 5 and Pablo Zabaleta led the ball into Anderson’s feet, scoring the first goal of a match that was over before it started. Of course, Manchester’s reaction was late, and a head by Romelu Lukaku, was the closest opportunity to score for Manchester, though the shot didn’t make it to the goal line.
Mark Noble and Pedro Obiang contained United’s midfield, where the young Scottish player Scott McTominay reigned and made it to a corner kick from the left flank that Yarmolenko held, played with the ball, dribbling like a big brother playing his little siblings, until a lash of his foot bounced onto Lindelof and entered, almost peacefully into De Gea’s goal.
The Goliath Rose And…
Manchester United was staggering and came back to life, at least for a brief moment, when Marcus Rashford back heeled it into the net from a corner shot, shortening the scores. But, three minutes later, Arnautovic killed all hopes and took advantage of a spectacular deep pass from Noble to beat De Gea and set the final score 3-1
Mourinho, from his usual spot, standing still from the technical side, barely drew his hand out of his pockets to point an isolated command, while his team was devastated right in front of him, and with almost no reaction from him.
Manchester United was seventh, with only ten points after West Ham’s match, and at the time this was written, was standing on the tenth position of the scoreboard, with only 14 points (Manchester city holds 23 points on the first position) and West Ham stays behind on the 14th place. A lot of people think that this will be the last season with Mourinho leading the Red Devils, many hope he doesn’t see the end of this season.