Manchester United haven’t exactly set the football world alight in Jose Mourinho’s debut season at Old Trafford.
Big things were expected from the Red Devils after Mourinho replaced the beleaguered Louis van Gaal last summer - and even bigger things were expected following the arrivals of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Eric Bailly, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and the most expensive footballer of all time, Paul Pogba.
But United are set to finish the season sixth in the Premier League table. Considering they were tipped to seriously challenge for the title at the start of the campaign, it could be argued Mourinho has failed quite spectacularly this term.
His saving grace is, of course, United’s performances in cup competitions.
Mourinho’s side won the EFL Cup back in February and are now through to the Europa League final following their semi-final victory over Celta Vigo. Beat Ajax next week and they’ll secure a place in next season’s Champions League.
Mourinho is now concentrating entirely on the Europa League. This has given him a useful excuse for the recent league defeats against Arsenal and Tottenham.
United were poor in both of those matches and also underwhelmed in their Europa League semi-final second leg against Celta at Old Trafford last week. Had John Guidetti scored with the final kick of the game, serious questions would be being asked of Mourinho.
Goal.com writer compares United to Macclesfield Town
This led Goal.com writer Kris Voakes to write in his latest column: “Fans of clubs in far worse shape than United will not feel the slightest bit sorry for those who have had to idly stand and watch their team submissively fall to Arsenal and Spurs - and hang on luckily against Celta Vigo - over the past week.
“But following United is meant to represent something different. There is supposed to be something quite mythical and mystical about cheering for United from the terraces all across England, but this was just another performance which could have been turned in by players wearing a Macclesfield Town shirt rather than a Manchester United one.”
Macclesfield Town responded on Twitter
Whether or not Voakes also wrote the headline - ‘Mourinho is turning Manchester United into Macclesfield Town’ - is unclear. There’s every chance he didn’t. But the headline caught the attention of the aforementioned Macclesfield Town on Twitter.
And the National League side called Goal out over the headline…
“Not quite sure what is wrong with Macclesfield Town…,” the club’s Twitter account posted.
This has now been retweeted over 1,000 times and ‘liked’ over 1,500 times.
Goal then replied: “Nothing wrong at all. We'd all much rather watch Askey's army than Mourinho's bus 😎“.
Hmm - not sure we’re buying that one!
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