Football

Mourinho: United should have taken a 5-0 lead at half-time

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho rued his side's profligacy, after a late goal condemned them to a 1-0 defeat by Basel in a Champions League Group A clash yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Midfielder Michael Lang tucked in an 89th-minute winner for the Swiss side after Raoul Petretta found him with a pinpoint low cross at the far post, giving United goalkeeper Sergio Romero no chance.

United defender Daley Blind blamed himself for Basel's late winner, saying that he had been too late in covering the dangerous Lang.

However, Mourinho was adamant that the Dutchman should not be made a scapegoat and, instead, blamed his side for not completing the job after United had wasted the chance to be five goals ahead by half-time.

"It is not fair for Blind to blame himself," Mourinho said.

"He had a very positive game. We have to blame everyone on the pitch because we had so many chances.

"Half-time, it should be 5-0. They didn't have a shot, we hit the post twice, had huge percentage of the ball, we created numerous chances and the game was easy to win.

"But we didn't score, the opponents survived and, in the second half, I felt they had a chance.

"With the minutes going, probably, my players felt that since they hadn't scored, they were looking not to concede and to get the point. However, in the last minute, they scored."

United, who are top of the group with 12 points from five games, now need only to avoid defeat by more than six goals at home to CSKA Moscow to be sure of avoiding an embarrassing relegation to the second-tier Europa League, which they won last season.

"We don't need to win the (final group) match, we don't even need to draw but, obviously, we will try to win," said Mourinho of United's clash with CSKA on Dec 6. - WIRE SERVICES

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