Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho admitted his players paid the price for their sluggish play in their shock 1-0 home defeat against West Bromwich Albion, which confirmed Manchester City’s Premier League title in turn.
“I think we were deservedly punished because we were masters in complication. Players didn’t want to or couldn’t play simple,” a visibly upset Mourinho told Sky Sports in the aftermath of United’s second home loss of the season.
Baggies forward Jay Rodriguez’s close-ranger header in the 73rd minute was the only goal on the night as the Red Devils struggled to click in attack, with star man Paul Pogba putting in yet another underwhelmin performance.
Pogba and Co. had put in a tremendous second-half against derby rivals City to win the Manchester Derby 3-2 and expectations were high that the Red Devils would carry forward their momentum against the bottom-ranked team in the league.
Despite having close to 70 per cent possession, the hosts could only muster five shots on goal (West Brom had four) as they slumped to their second home defeat of the season.
“Everything was slow, everything was one more touch, one more flick, one more trick, one more turn, ball lost and no continuity or fluidity in our football.”
“I don’t think we deserved to lose but we gave them the opportunity to win the match by being solid in defence and smelling a chance in a set-play which they did,” the Portuguese tactician added.
United now have a midweek clash at Bournemouth to prepare for before turning their attentions to a FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham Hotspur on April 21.
The Red Devils lead third-placed Liverpool by just one point, although they do have a game in hand, but with Liverpool hitting their stride of late, Mourinho’s men will come under pressure to hold onto second spot as the season nears a close.