Interviewer: Jose, how big of a performance, how big of a win was that?
I think it was a very good performance, it was a very good result. Obviously, it is not easy to win against them, and even more difficult to win in such a comfortable way, as we did. But I think the performance was really good. Obviously, in the second half, nobody was expecting to score 4 more goals, and win 8-0. So, it was more about control, but to be fair, we wanted a little bit more. But, I think that Raineri was very good, because the way he read the game at half-time. His options were very good to keep some balance, because I think he felt at that moment that the game was lost, and was a question of – lose in a heavy way, or to lose with some control of the result and the performance, so I think Raineri did very well.
Interviewer: Where were the improvements with your team today?
I think that we started well for the first time, I can say, because normally our second halves are much better than the firsts. I don’t know, we prepared for the game in the same way, with the same professionalism. Our intention is obviously to start really well, but today, we had good intensity, we had good movement, we had good dynamics. Defensively, we were very sound against a team that, I repeat, is easy to analyze but difficult to cope with. And this time we analyzed and we coped. So, to be back home with the champions is good. Last season, we couldn’t beat them, this season, we beat them already twice; so, I think it is a really good performance.
Interviewer: Before the match, you wanted the focus on the players you did pick and who were out there. Who shone on for you?
The team. I think the team played very well. Point – you score four goals, your striker doesn’t score a goal, and I think the striker plays phenomenal. I think Ibra played absolutely fantastic in the way that he was key in our attacking football and also in our pressure football at the starting. So, probably, you are going in other directions – I am happy when you do that in a positive way, but I prefer to say that my team as a team played very well.
Interviewer: Given that you said that Ibrahimovic was excellent and the players around him were superb, is Wayne Rooney going to have to be patient now to get back into this team, or will he remain a big player for you?
Big player for me (laughs), a big player for United, and a big player for this country. I think I have nothing else to say. He’s my man, I trust him completely. He is as happy as I am in this moment, and that’s a team.
Interviewer: He’s in there happy with his teammates, is he?
Of course! His team won, his United won. That’s normal.
Interviewer: Is it a good start now for Manchester United, looking back at the 6 games as a whole? Do you think it’s been a good start?
We lost 6 points in the Premier League, but the reality is that we are not drawing – we are winning. So, we have four victories, so we have 12 points. So, the situation of two defeats – if you had a lot of draws, and no defeats, in the end, is about the same. So, the fact that we have four victories is really important because we have 12 points. But I think today was about the result, was about the performance, was about the security, was about the happiness of the fans. I don’t know when they had, for the last time, such a good performance – such an impressive result at half-time, 4-0 at half-time. So, good. And Thursday, we have a very important match in the Europa League, and to be back here after a victory is better for us, better for our fans.
Interviewer: Thanks Jose, well done.
Interviewer: How important was that, Jose?
It was important to win, because we came from two defeats in the Premier League, so it was very important to not even draw the match, but you know they are a very dangerous team. We start well this time, we were very strong. We felt their fragility when they concede the second goal, we went for more in that moment and the team, I think, played really well. In the second half, it is difficult to keep that intensity. Raineri, I think, did very well because he felt that the game was over and then he was playing to control the game and try not to lose by more. He was intelligent, experienced. Experience is so important in our job. And the second half was about them to control the game, and about us to control the result, three points, and a great result for us.
Interviewer: Was the first half in particular, a template for what you want to see Manchester United become?
Yes! I can say yes, because we were much more aggressive, we pressed higher, the team was quicker to react when the ball was lost, we were very objective, we had lots of fast football. I think, Mata thinks football very fast and Lingard and Rashford – they give a great intensity for the team, and I think Zlatan – it is one of those matches where the striker doesn’t score one goal in four, but he plays superb.
Having made some big calls to your team selection, did you feel that the end result was exactly how you had envisaged it?
We played the way what we can play, we played really well. The preparation for the game is always good. And then, the game is a game – and there are many things that are not under control. That is why football is so beautiful, and so loved. But the reality is that today, we played very very well until the game was closed. At half time, the game was closed. And in the second half, the game was won.
Do you see this as a team performance, or were there some players in particular that you were absolutely delighted with?
I think for the team to play so well, it is because the players individually played so well. One mistake here, one mistake there? Yes, of course, yes, but consistency is the last thing we have in a team, the principles are the first thing, the dynamica are the second thing, and the last thing is the consistency. So, I cannot expect us to play 90 minutes in a phenomenal way.
Finally, do you think this is the start of something now? We hope this is the start of something.
I just prefer to say that this is the start of a week where we have three matches at home, where it is very important for us to win all three. The six points in the Premier League are very important, and the three points in the Europa League are very important too, so three consecutive home matches in a week. The same way we had a bad week with three defeats, let’s see if this time, playing at home, we can have three victories in a row.