Published: Sat, May 27, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Titles more important than top four, says Mourinho

Titles more important than top four, says Mourinho

The former Reds midfielder admits the Portuguese's move paid off, but he is desperate for Ajax to keep Manchester United out of the Champions League next season by winning the Europa League. "At Manchester United, for us it's more important to win titles than to finish in the top four".

Especially because he played two Europa League matches, so if we win, he wins the trophy.

"We know that, but we fight for titles".

The England global will miss the first three games of next season's Champions League campaign as a result.

"I am not upset because we had to make that decision".

"When people say that we gamble by going for the Europa League", Mourinho told Sky Sports.

"We had to do it because, if I have Ashley Young, Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo, Ibrahimovic, Tim Fosu-Mensah, if I have these guys (who are injured), I can rotate, I can go for every match".

"But if I was on your side and you are always looking for this kind of capital-letters big headlines, I accept if you say that". It's as simple as that.

We are actually getting a good enough price to bet on Spurs to win outright in this game and that is by far the best bet we can find.

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He added, "These last five matches of the season, four very hard matches away from home and we managed with this situation at least to keep some balance, to fight for results and to give a positive image of dignity".

The closing stages of United's semi-final second leg against Celta Vigo, a 1-1 draw that sent the Red Devils through 2-1 on aggregate, saw both sides reduced to 10 men following a heated clash, with Bailly dismissed for raising his hand to John Guidetti and Facundo Roncaglia for retaliating. I can not lose 5-0 or 6-0.

Mourinho rested key players again yesterday, just as he did when United lost 2-0 at Arsenal last Sunday.

Mourinho rested players last weekend in preparation for this game, making eight alterations to his starting line-up for the 2-0 Premier League defeat at Arsenal.

De Gea made three appearances in the group stages, with Romero, 30, having played every game in the knockout stages.

United will close out the 2016-17 season with four games in 11 days - culminating in the Europa League final on May 24 - so the schedule is no less congested than it was last week.

The 27-year-old has played key role for Mourinho this season and the fact that he has been left out of Wednesday's game points to a potential final start in Stockholm. So I am happy with the situation today.

Mourinho added: "Even if it was unfair, I don't know, but even if it was unfair I don't think UEFA rules will allow any chance of an appeal".

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