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Mourinho Is Getting Away With Murder This Season Compared To Guardiola

Sunday 5th March 2017
There are two months left of the season to go and Man Utd are in sixth place, nowhere near the league title, whereas Man City still remain the closest challengers to Chelsea as they lie in 3rd with a game in hand, but yet it's Pep Guardiola who has had the criticism all season long and Jose Mourinho is enjoying praise for his work at Man Utd. How is this right?

When was the last time you saw Manchester Utd in 6th place in March?! It's disgraceful, especially when you consider the amount of money they have spent over the last few years. Mourinho is getting away with murder this season compared to Guardiola.

At the start of this season if you asked people 'who do you think is going to win the title?', most people would have said it's between Manchester City and Manchester Utd. Rightfully so as well. City brought in the man every club wants in Guardiola after his 3 back to back Bundesliga titles with Bayern Munich and Man Utd brought in Mourinho who won the Premier League title in 2015. The Red Devils also broke the transfer record to bring back Paul Pogba to add to the signing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic to bring home the league title.
People look to the unbeaten run Man Utd are on under Mourinho and take that as everything is going well and he is improving the team. Going 17 games without defeat is an impressive statistic but even this can be looked upon with scrutiny with the straight forward points they have dropped with draws coming in home games against Burnley, a struggling West Ham team at the time, Hull City, and most recently Bournemouth. Before this unbeaten run, they were humiliated at Chelsea 4-0 and dropped more points at home against Stoke. If it weren't for Rooney smacking in a free-kick in the last minute at the Bet365 stadium to rescue a point against Stoke in the away fixture, then this impressive run wouldn't still be going and people might just start to judge Man Utd more fairly as to where they are. Lagging behind the other 'Top 6' clubs.

Winning the EFL Cup is also a huge camouflage to Mourinho's season thus far as since when does winning that competition rank as a worthy achievement for a team going for the league title and a club the size of Man Utd? It never has before so why is it now? Louis Van Gaal got sacked after winning the FA Cup as it wasn't seen as a worthwhile achievement as Man Utd finished outside the top 4. Well, Man Utd are outside the top 4 now and have been pretty much all season, the EFL Cup is meaningless to them which was clearly shown in the lack of celebration or joy from Mourinho himself and the players. Man Utd are doing well in the Europa League though, some people might say. Yes and? Again, this is Man Utd. You would expect them to be in the last 16 of that competition all day long. You would expect them to be in the last 16 of the Champions League if they ever get there again, so again, this is not any kind of achievement.

Taking it back to Man City and Pep Guardiola, look at the criticism he has been receiving all season long. He needs to change his methods, he is playing the wrong players, he needs to improve the defence, he needs a goalkeeper, he needs to get used to the Premier League etc, etc. Mr Guardiola currently sits 2nd in the table if they win their game in hand, they are still in the FA Cup and are currently the bookies favourites to win it and they are in pole position to get through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Yet with seemingly every press conference he is questioned. Jose Mourinho does not suffer from this type of scrutiny and it is shocking.

Mourinho has a good 7 years or so experience in English football, Guardiola has had 7 months. Manchester United football club with all of the millions and millions they have spent since they sacked Moyes are not much better off. Louis Van Gaal was run out of town based on his style of play, what exactly is so expansive about Jose's style of play with this United team? I can't see it. They are a team completely reliant on one man and one man only and that's 35-year-old Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Usually, when a team are a one man band they are criticised for it, Liverpool with Steven Gerrard received this type of treatment for e,g, yet Man Utd do not. When is it going to change? When Zlatan gets injured? When Man Utd are dumped out of either the FA Cup or Europa League? When will people realise they are still outside the Champions League places with only a handful of games left? Man Utd are not on track this season, nowhere near in fact. They were gunning for the title this season and have been stuck in 6th place for months. Yet Jose Mourinho is a hero. All very strange.
Ginger Pirlo
Football Writer since 2011. Professional Football Analyst. Premier League In-stadium Data Operator. Qualified FA Coach currently Level 2. TheGingerPirlo.com. @ToonBano

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