Paul Ince: Jose Mourinho is out of excuses and should expect to lose his job

The former Manchester United captain Paul Ince believes the club no longer has presence and the manager's days are numbered.


There’s been a lot of talk of Man United’s defeat to Juventus being a case of men against boys. I can see why.

When you watch Juve play, there’s a balance to their team, each player knows where they need to be in relation to each other and it’s evident they fit together well.

When you watch United, they look like a deer in the headlights. It makes me wonder what exactly it is they work on in training every week.


There’s been a lot of money spent on players, some big-name ones too, and yet Juventus were far superior to them. The game, plus the results coming from Man City and Liverpool, really proved just how far away United are from winning anything.

You could tell Juventus weren’t in any way frightened at Old Trafford.

Facing United didn’t intimidate them one bit, and that’s a serious problem. The stadium is no longer a fortress.

They allowed the Italian side to walk all over them and made it easy for them to win. In fact, I’d go as far as to say United didn’t look remotely capable of winning the game from the off.


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Unfortunately, it doesn’t surprise me. Even when you look at the Newcastle and Chelsea games, they were woeful in the first 45 minutes. They managed to get a result, yes, but they’re totally inconsistent.

It’s a lie to say that they’re playing well, they’ve been lucky to get the results they have.

Jose Mourinho is out of excuses – he should expect to lose his job.

We’re three seasons into Mourinho’s reign now. There are no more excuses. He’s spent a lot of money, if I was managing a team and they’d given me three years, and it was clear we weren’t up to standard, I’d expect to lose my job.

It looks to me like Jose Mourinho is stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea. Realistically, he wants to play defensively and nick a one nil win, but he knows that the fans and players at United won’t accept that. And they’re right not to.

Are we getting to the stage where United just aren’t good enough? Yes. They’re slipping too far behind, and can’t compete with the best sides anymore.

They’re not even showing signs of improvement. In fact they’re going backwards. He bought Fred who can’t get a game, and the same goes for Alexis Sanchez. He’s disappeared! His career has gone backwards.

I can see why there’s been criticisms of the board. But, in their defence, you can’t go and spend £50 million on Fred just to stick him on the bench. You can’t keep getting away with it and expect not to be questioned.

Mourinho is too focused on what the opposition are doing. Focus on your own team, instead. Your players look completely scared, they have no confidence at all.

The sad fact is United have no presence any more. Liverpool do, Man City clearly do, even Chelsea in such a short time are showing what they’re made of. Why after three years are Manchester United still trying to find a winning formula under Mourinho?

They’re trying to find a remedy, the right personnel and a style of play, and it’s failing. With Jurgen Klopp, you know the direction his team are going in. You can see what they’ve been working on in training all week. With United, they look like they don’t have a clue.

The players don’t know what they’re doing. It’s more of a case of go out, hope we get a result, see what happens. I’m not disputing they’ve got some incredible talent, but from what I’m seeing they don’t know how to play together.

Romelu Lukaku isn’t going to change, I’m not sure he has the ability to play for Man United. It looked like he was trying to do something against Juventus. No matter how hard he tried, he just wasn’t capable.

When you’re at United, you must perform at a seven or eight out of 10 every week. I’m not sure he has the ability to do that. He should be the focal point of the team.

He’s 25 years old now, he’s not going to change. The Lukaku you have now, is the Lukaku you’re always going to have, that’s what you’ve got to work with.

It’s obvious that he needs help. There’s no doubt that he can score goals, you can see it from his record. But playing for United is about more than just that.

He constantly loses the ball, throughout every game. But as an ex-player, if my control and retention of the ball wasn’t great, I’d be out there every single afternoon getting it right.

I’ve been a manager of players, centre-forwards, who’s control was off. I’ve worked with them to improve. It makes you wonder what he’s working on in training, because we’ve not seen an improvement.

You can’t always blame the manager, sometimes you need to take responsibility for your own performances.

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What do you think?