Fans have turned on Jose Mourinho after just the second game of the Premier League season following Manchester United’s dismal 3-2 defeat at Brighton on Sunday.
Mourinho’s side were blown away on the south-coast as Brighton scored twice in two minutes thanks to goals from Glenn Murray and Shane Duffy midway through the first half.
Romelu Lukaku got one back, but Pascal Gross’s penalty capitalised on more poor United defending to send Brighton into the interval with a 3-1 lead.
United rarely looked like mounting a fightback and Paul Pogba’s penalty with virtually the last kick of the game came way too late.
A shell-shocked Mourinho conceded United’s players had only themselves to blame for their first defeat of the Premier League season.
“We were punished by the mistakes we made. For me that’s the story of the game. We made incredible mistakes in some crucial moments. Mistakes that killed us,” Mourinho said.
“Especially that third goal — we expected to come at 2-1 with positivity — then the third goal killed us off in the second half. Our second goal came too late.
“The week leading up was good and I expected the team collectively to be better. There are basic mistakes that makes almost an impossible mission to win the match.”
Mourinho famously struggles in his third seasons with clubs and, after weeks of the manager criticising the club’s lack of transfer success in the pre-season, many fans predicted an exit could be a matter of time.
But few might have expected #MourinhoOut – in the vein of Arsenal fans’ long-lasting #WengerOut campaign that was mercifully put down at the end of last season – to begin this weekend.
I ended my total (blind) support of Mourinho after Sevilla last season.
I end what’s left of my support of Mourinho today.
— Ovie (@OvieO) August 19, 2018
— #MourinhoOut – The Finished One (@MourinhoGetOut) August 19, 2018
My 8 year old son just said “at this rate we’ll need Big Sam Alladyce to save us after Christmas” #MourinhoOut
— oliarno (@Oliarno) August 19, 2018
We still the same boring team under Mourinho signing the best players won't solve the problem The brand of football played by Mour sides over the years has been boring He is not prepared to change the style of play We need to get a manager with an attacking mindset #MourinhoOut
— RashidB (@RBanderker) August 19, 2018
Embarrassing. Absolutely embarrassing. Can’t buy class? He doesn’t have an ounce of it. Ask Shaw / Martial and whoever he throws under the bus after this game. Atrocious football.
Sack him! #mourinhoout
— Ross Larkin (@rosslarkin) August 19, 2018
Rival fans even got in on the act:
So United fans.
— Oris (@EdmundOris) August 19, 2018
— Jaka Petric (@JakaPetric) August 19, 2018
Many of Mourinho’s stars, including World Cup winner Pogba, new signing Fred and French forward Anthony Martial, were anonymous for long periods, but the boss refused to criticise individuals.
“I don’t want to go in that direction. I have to learn from my reality,” Mourinho said.
“Last season when I was critical of my team and was debating openly of the performances I was criticised for being too open about my players.
“I will be open when they are doing well. I cannot criticise the desire of my players.”
France midfielder Pogba took blame for his lethargic display, admitting he had been well below his best.
“I’m disappointed, with my performance and the team performance. We didn’t deserve to win,” Pogba said.
“I will always try. I know I lost a lot of balls which shouldn’t happen.
“I tried, I kept pushing, that’s my personality. I tried to help the team as much as possible. It didn’t happen today.”
Questioning United’s desire, Pogba said Brighton had wanted the points more.
“Maybe we didn’t have the attitude to break them, to kill them when we had to kill them and to go through the lines. That’s a lesson we have to keep in mind,” Pogba said.
“Today the truth is we didn’t play well enough. They had more hunger than us and the result is the right one for them.”