Jose Mourinho: Man City would have been in "big trouble" had Marouane Fellaini started on the bench

Posted Tuesday, November 13, 2018 by

Jose Mourinho: Man City would have been in

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho believes using Marouane Fellaini off the bench would have put Manchester City 'in big, big trouble'.

The Belgian midfielder was thrown in at the start of Sunday's Manchester derby due to a thigh injury ruling out Paul Pogba. He then played the full 90 minutes as United were humbled by the league leaders in a 3-1 defeat.

Mourinho admitted he doesn't like to lose games and suggested that the Juventus match in mid-week played a part in his sides defeat.

But the Portuguese also claimed not having Fellaini as a weapon off the bench hampered his plans.

"I don't like to lose a game and speak about this player or that player that was not [available] but it was important for us in many aspects of the game because we had to play Fellaini and he was not ready to play for 90 minutes," Mourinho said, as reported by the Evening Standard.

"I can just imagine, when the result was 2-1, to bring a fresh Fellaini to the pitch, I think they would be in big, big trouble.

"But when the result was 2-1 and we had that final push Fellaini was doing an incredible effort to stay on the pitch, not fresh at all, risking his injury and condition and to give everything for the team.

"For different reasons we missed Paul but that doesn't mean with Paul we would win the game so it is not an excuse."

Manchester City went into the match as favourites and they dominated proceedings having 65% of the possession while outshooting United by 17 attempts to five.

Aguero continued his impressive record against the Red Devils by bagging his eighth Premier League goal against them – only Alan Shearer has netted more times against United (10) in the competition.

The result leaves Manchester United in eighth place, 12 points behind their city rivals after 12 games and seven off fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur.

United next face Crystal Palace after the international break knowing they have the opportunity to close the gap on either third-placed Chelsea or Tottenham as the pair go head-to-head at Wembley.

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