Football

Man United boss Mourinho says they were killed by 'ridiculous goal'

United boss Mourinho laments 11th-second strike by Spurs' Eriksen

Jose Mourinho was left lamenting a "ridiculous goal" after one of the quickest strikes in English Premier League history sent his Manchester United side on the way to a damaging 2-0 defeat by Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Christian Eriksen fired Spurs into the lead after just 11 seconds before an own goal from United defender Phil Jones secured victory for the home side before the break.

Defeat left United second in the table but a huge 15 points behind runaway leaders Manchester City, who beat bottom club West Bromwich Albion 3-0 at the Etihad Stadium.

In the Premier League era, Eriksen's express finish is tied for second-quickest with a Mark Viduka effort for Leeds against Charlton Athletic in 2001.

Only Ledley King's 10th-second goal for Tottenham against Bradford City in 2000 and Alan Shearer's after the same time for Newcastle United against Manchester City in 2003 are ahead of Eriksen and Viduka.

"It's a performance that starts with a ridiculous goal. That goal after a few seconds has a big influence in the game because Tottenham can play the way they like to play," United manager Mourinho told the BBC.

"In the end, we played against a very good team. Both goals were ridiculous goals.

"The first goal is an accumulation of mistakes in spite of the fact that everything happened so fast. My players have watched the Tottenham kick-off many, many times," the Portuguese boss added.

"It was a really, really bad goal."

But Mourinho said conceding an own goal had done almost as much damage to the visitors' morale as Eriksen's extraordinary opener.

He said: "The second goal mentally kills the team.

"A team to win matches needs to score goals and also defend well - on this occasion we were very bad."

Victory saw Spurs close to within two points of the top four and a Champions League place, and Eriksen told BT Sport: "It feels a bit weird to score from your first touch. It was the perfect start to a game and after that we never gave it away."

Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino added: "We always try to be aggressive from the beginning.

"Our aim is to be focused from the beginning.

"You can win a game if you're ready to fight. It was massive to be up early in the game."

Over at the Etihad, Man City's Belgium star Kevin de Bruyne pummelled West Brom with a devastating performance, which culminated with a superb goal that began with a run from his own half.

Fernandinho and Sergio Aguero were the other scorers in the 3-0 victory.- AFP, REUTERS

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