United will soon be back in top four – Mourinho
‘When you are there, which we are going to be . . . you can feel it’
Bournemouth v Manchester Utd you can look to the situation at that moment – also the injuries, suspension, form and then you can feel it. But in this moment we are outside the top four so the point is now to get the points we need to try and be in the end of December in a better position than we are in now at this moment. I think we will be in a better position.”
Mourinho pointed to the schedule as a factor in United’s low position. “The reality is that the way the fixtures are coming sometimes they have an influence [at a particular] moment,” said the Portuguese.
“We had two fixtures away – against Burnley and Watford – now we have the same – Bournemouth [Saturday] and Manchester City. We will have Juventus [in the Champions League] away before Manchester City, we will have Valencia away before Liverpool.
“In this part of the season we play away against possibly the three biggest candidates for the title – Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City – so the calendar was not nice to us. But by the end of December, which is the end of the first half of the Premier League, we are not going to be in the position we are now, will be a better position.”
Meanwhile, United have launched a review into their security protocols after it emerged a pitch invader got into Old Trafford with two toy guns during last month’s Champions League game against Juventus.
Shortly after play got under way during the hosts’ 1-0 defeat by the Italian champions, a fan ran across the pitch and was restrained by stewards close to the players.
Manchester United said the safety of fans was an “absolute priority” for the club. “Carrying a children’s miniature plastic toy gun into a stadium is clearly an extremely irresponsible act,” said a spokesperson.
“The security and safety of all fans is the absolute priority, the club immediately launched an investigation into the circumstances around this issue.”
Antonio Valencia has a knee problem and is unavailable for the Bournemouth game.
– Guardian aware of “neither the existence nor the content” of the draft of the “binding term sheet” and “as a matter of policy, does not comment on confidential discussions”.
The 11 founding clubs, according to the document, would register a company in Spain to market, organise and execute the European Super League under its full control. The competition would have a group stage and a knockout round.
The document also has a list of potential ownership stakes by the individual clubs in the joint European Super League company, with Real Madrid holding 18.77%, Barcelona 17.61% and Manchester United 12.58%.
Last year the Uefa president, Aleksander Ceferin, accused Europe’s top leagues of attempting to “blackmail” the governing body and told leading clubs he would never allow the creation of a European super league. Ceferin accused “some leagues” of trying to hold Uefa to ransom and “some clubs” of agitating for a closed super league.
“To some clubs, I shall say it calmly and dispassionately, but firmly and resolutely: there will be no closed league. Quite simply, that is not in line with our values and ideals,” he said in 2017.
“We will never give in to the blackmail of those who think they can manipulate small leagues or impose their will on the associations because they think they are all powerful on account of the astronomical revenues they generate.”