Mourinho: Man Utd still have 'motivation to finish second

07 April, 2018, 00:52 | Author: Elena Meyer
  • Spoiling Manchester City's party is not the main motivation for Man United boss Jose Mourinho ahead of derby

The Premier League champions-elect can secure the title with a win at home to Manchester United on Saturday, and Pogba is expected to start the game.

Victory for Pep Guardiola's side would seal the Spaniard's first Premier League title after a season of dominance over their rivals.

It would highlight the gulf between City and the rest of the league, now led by second-place United.

But the derby comes just three days before the return leg of their European tie and Guardiola faces a hard balancing act, still believing he can overturn the Champions League deficit at the Etihad.

Many believe Jurgen Klopp's idea of having a go at Manchester City is the best way to stop Guardiola's men, but Mourinho kept his counsel when asked about Liverpool's way.

Mourinho was uncharacteristically taciturn ahead of the game, refusing to discuss a number of topics, although he did confess that he will not try and talk down City's obvious superiority in the league table. We have made mistakes and the nice thing is we can do better when that has happened.

"We are going to pick to win, there is no doubt, but there will be one eye on Tuesday".

He has created another 15 Premier League goals this term, along with seven efforts of his own, and is a leading contender for the PFA Player of the Year award alongside Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah.

Manchester United have two injury concerns at the moment as defender Daley Blind (ankle) and goalkeeper Sergio Romero (knee) will be watching the derby from the stands.

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"These are the games you play the whole season for".

"I know what it would mean (to win the league by beating United)", Guardiola has said. "On the left we have Fabian Delph, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Danilo so in this season we cannot do that, but maybe when Mendy comes back then sometimes we will do that because with Vincent Kompany, Nico (Otamendi), Aymeric Laporte and John (Stones) we have exceptional central defenders, so maybe we can use it".

Sergio Aguero could return for Manchester City's derby against United if he passes a fitness test on Friday.

Guardiola understandably took umbrage after being described as "a dog" by Raiola last week, with the pair's feud dating back several years.

The £89million man was dropped in February amid a loss of form.

"So far our season has been so good".

Liverpool will be on hold for a few days and the game against United, which had seemed one City could afford to lose because it is when rather than if the Blues win the title, has a very different look post-Anfield.

"I would say distant", De Bruyne told The Premier League Show when asked about his relationship with Mourinho.

Guardiola said: "It will be so hard next Tuesday but we are going to try".

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