After a turbulent week at Old Trafford, Jose Mourinho and Paul Pogba’s latest dispute continues to cause chaos at Manchester United.
A 3-1 defeat at the London Stadium on Saturday against West Ham resigned the Red Devils to their third defeat of the season and left them nine points off the pace at the top of the Premier League table.
The result compounded an awful week for the club, following a 1-1 draw against Wolves the previous Saturday and a stunning Carabao Cup defeat against Derby County last Wednesday, both in front of the home faithful at Old Trafford.
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Add to that the ongoing feud between Pogba and Mourinho and United really are on the verge of a collapse behind the scenes, with the Portuguese coach no longer able to keep his players in line or indeed inspire them on the pitch.
According to the Guardian, in another twist to the saga, with Mourinho already on the team bus, the French midfielder was approached by journalists asking for a chat on his way out of the Olympic Stadium at the weekend, to which he retorted: “You want me dead?”
The 25-year-old’s tongue in cheek comment actually serves to shed some light on his relationship with the Portuguese coach, which is obviously on tenterhooks and fragile if he his constantly on edge about keeping his manager waiting.
Mourinho stripped Pogba of the vice-captaincy last week after his comments about the team’s style of play in the media and he was substituted in the 70th minute of the West Ham game with the score at 2-0 and the game still very much in the balance.
It seems as though the 55-year-old head coach is engaging in a battle for supremacy with his star player, which will surely only end one way if the bad results continue in the coming weeks.
Mourinho is being criticised from all corners of the club, in the tabloids and even by his own players, not to mention masterminding the team’s decline in the early stages of the 2018-19 campaign.
It is more likely that he will be shown the door before Pogba is, particularly given the fact that David Moyes and Louis Van Gaal both lost their jobs at Man United amid similar circumstances.