Regardless of Manchester United’s placing in the Premier League season, Jose Mourinho’s debut season at Old Trafford was a complete success.
The Red Devils landed the EFL Cup trophy in February and went on to win the Europa League, too, meaning it doesn’t matter that United finished sixth in the table; they will still be playing in the Champions League next season.
And with Ed Woodward set to hand Mourinho a reported £300m budget in the transfer window, it’s likely that the days of United finishing sixth are over for the foreseeable future.
Mourinho watched his side cruise to a 2-0 win over Ajax in Stockholm last Wednesday. It was thought that Ajax’s youth could cause United problems but that simply wasn’t the case, Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan scoring the goals as United’s experience prevailed.
Mourinho has won the Champions League twice and titles in Portugal, England, Italy and Spain, yet he said the Europa League is his greatest accomplishment to date.
"For me it's the most important trophy of my career," the 54-year-old was quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News. "Because it's the last, that's the way I look at things.
“Of course the Champions League is bigger than the Europa League but that's the last trophy and the last trophy is the one where the feelings are under the skin and it's obviously a fantastic feeling.
"For the team it means everything. It means the third trophy [after the Community Shield and the EFL Cup], it means going back to the Champions League, means another European trophy, means play European Super Cup in Macedonia next August.
“It means for the club the last piece of the puzzle, it's now like Ajax is and some other clubs - a club with every trophy in the world of football”
Mourinho's tactics explored
A YouTuber by the name ‘TheNextManager’ has highlighted just how Mourinho was able to orchestrate the win with a detailed look at the United manager’s tactics.
He explores Marcus Rashford’s pressing, claiming that United let Ajax defender Davinson Sanchez have the ball because he isn’t as good as building play from the back.
He also analyses how United exploited Ajax’s narrow defence by spreading the ball out to Antonio Valencia on the right flank.
Check out the complete video below.
Watch: Mourinho's tactics vs Ajax
How far will Man United go in the Europa League? Let us know in the comments section below!
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