Sevilla are a bigger club than Manchester United, or at least that’s the impression you’d be left with after listening to Jose Mourinho’s epic press conference rant yesterday.
The Spanish side were major underdogs as the clubs met in the last 16 of the Champions League this week, but emerged shock 2-1 winners at Old Trafford after a solid showing over both legs.
Still, most would agree that it was United who were poor more than Sevilla were good, though Mourinho clearly doesn’t see it that way.
‘We were knocked out by a team that’s brilliant in their approach for many years, with their scouting system, the way they invest with every Euro. Do you think they didn’t have any players who could play in my team? In Sevilla, there are many players who would play in my team,’ Mourinho shouted as he somewhat lost it at reporters yesterday.
Does the Portuguese have a point? Or is he making excuses again? Here’s our two cents on the matter…
An absolute yes from us on this guy – Steven N’Zonzi has been superb in recent times for Sevilla and on the evidence of Tuesday night would be a far superior option to Paul Pogba, that’s for sure.
The Frenchman has been linked with Arsenal this season and could undoubtedly do a job in the Premier League, with United also in need of new midfielders.
Fair play, Jose, you know a Pogba upgrade when you see one.
Another quality performer for Sevilla over both legs, Ever Banega has been linked with bigger clubs in the past though has never quite established himself enough to make it onto that stage.
Perhaps more performances like this in the Champions League will earn him a big move, and United could certainly do worse than the crafty Argentine as a replacement for Michael Carrick, who is due to retire in the summer.
Wissam Ben Yedder
Someone should’ve warned Manchester United about Wissam Ben Yedder…? pic.twitter.com/ACg94TH0iB
— CaughtOffside (@caughtoffside) March 15, 2018
He probably wouldn’t be first choice, but Sevilla forward Wissam Ben Yedder looks a slightly undervalued talent right now after his heroics off the bench in midweek.
It’s hard to see why the Frenchman wasn’t starting when he made such a superb impact as soon as he came on, and you’d probably take him over Alexis Sanchez on current form.
A better player than his stats suggest, though his lack of consistency and end-product could hinder him in terms of attracting big suitors like United.
Luis Muriel seems to have just about found his level at Sevilla, though at a stretch you could imagine him as a decent backup for the Red Devils.
As above, Franco Vazquez is one of those players who looks pretty useful in a side that’s set up well for him now, but he isn’t necessarily good enough to slot in anywhere.
And of course, the pressure of representing a big name like United could be too much for a player who’s never really been under the spotlight in quite that way.
A solid defender who’s been linked with big Premier League clubs in the past, but you’d have to think there’s a reason it’s never happened for him.
Still, could Mourinho use him right now with Phil Jones and Chris Smalling looking so unconvincing for so much of this season? Quite possibly, so we’ll give him that one.
Not really, Jose. Don’t get us wrong, they were very good in midweek, but it’s not exactly an XI of players top clubs across Europe would be crying out for.
The sad reality for Mourinho is they performed well above their ability level while United performed well below theirs – and that ultimately has to come down to the manager.
The former Chelsea boss got it wrong with a cautious approach in both games against Sevilla and it’s not hard to imagine how much more someone like Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp could get out of Pogba, Sanchez and co.