Mourinho says focusing on Europa not a gamble after Spurs loss
Tottenham Hotspur got it done, winning the final match at White Hart Lane
and clinching the second place spot in the Premier League for
the 2016-17 season.
Credit for that, but Spurs were somewhat aided by the visitors’ lineup choice,
as Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho opted to play his top side in Thursday’s
UEFA Europa League final.
The Red Devils are chasing qualification for the UEFA Champions League
through a UEL title, and essentially sacrificed the chance to finish Top Four to focus
on the tournament.
United left Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Ander Herrera, and Marcus Rashford on the bench
to start, and did not have Paul Pogba available following a reported death in the
family. Mourinho said that the focus on Europa was calculated, not a risk, and defies
those who say otherwise. From the BBC: “When people say we gambled by going to
Europa League, we didn’t gamble. You can’t play two big competitions with 15 players.
It was compulsory. The ones that needed to play 90 minutes got to play. We got no
injuries. At the moment, the Premier League matches are the ones we don’t want
“I don’t want to think about next season – I want to think about the final we
have to play in.”
United has one Premier League match left before the big final against Ajax, a
Dutch side, which played the youngest side in league history on Sunday.