Football

Roy Keane on Mourinho: 'I'm sick to death of him'

Keane blasts Mourinho for constant moaning of fixture pile-up and fatigue

Former Manchester United captain Roy Keane has launched an scathing attack on Jose Mourinho, questioning whether the Portuguese is up to the demands of the job.

Keane was speaking as a pundit on ITV after United's lethargic 1-0 win over Rostov in the second leg of the Europa League last-16 tie, where Mourinho used his post-match press conference to complain about his side's crammed fixture list.

The boss said United's run of games, which will see them play on Monday, Thursday and tomorrow this week, proves the Red Devils have "enemies".

United progressed to the last eight of the Europa League with a 2-1 aggregate win.

But Keane ridiculed that opinion, saying: "'I've never heard so much rubbish in my life. Why do we have to listen to that garbage?

"It's just utter nonsense what he's talking about.

"He's manager of Manchester United, one of the biggest clubs on the planet.

"The squad he's got, the players, and he keeps moaning about fixtures and fatigue.

"We were just looking at some of the cup draws they've had.

"They've had an easy ride in the cups, some good draws, a lot of home draws.

"The guy's talking absolute nonsense. I've never heard so much rubbish in my life.

"Maybe the club's too big for him. He can't deal with all these demands at the match, what matches? Man United reserves could have won that game tonight. I'm sick to death of him."

United's move into the quarter-finals - enhancing their prospect of Champions League qualification for next season - came at a cost as Paul Pogba and Daley Blind picked up injuries.

Defender Marcos Rojo also appeared to be running on empty and was seen eating a banana passed to him by Ashley Young in the second half in a bid to increase his energy levels.

But Keane believes that was all for show.

"He's talking about the player collapsing," Keane said.

"That was easier than a training session - 11 v 11 on the training pitch, that was easier than that.

"And he's talking about players collapsing. What rubbish.

A STAGED DRAMA

"I've seen players maybe get Jaffa Cakes passed onto the pitch, so I wasn't surprised a player was looking for some sort of food, but they made a bigger drama than what it was.

"He's got other staff. One of the fitness coaches could have come on with that, the medical staff. He's passing it on to Ashley Young, he's passing it on.

"That was all staged, without a shadow of a doubt."

Meanwhile, Mourinho said that United are not ready yet to become the dominant force in English football they were during the trophy-laden years of the Alex Ferguson era.

United have finished seventh, fourth and fifth in the English Premier League since the retirement of Ferguson, who led the club to 13 Premier League titles, two Champions League trophies and five FA Cups in almost 27 years at Old Trafford.

"We are not ready to be a dominant force. We are not ready to try and win everything," the Portuguese told the BBC.

"Because of the nature of the club and of myself, we are ready to fight for every game, every point.

"But there is a space between the general ambition of such a giant club and what we are in reality."

Mourinho, who won three league titles in two spells with Chelsea, also questioned the club's transfer business under his predecessor Louis van Gaal, who sold strikers Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez as well as winger Angel di Maria.

"I would never have sold di Maria, Chicharito (Hernandez), Danny Welbeck - never, no chance," he said.

"I found a sad club. Manchester United sold players who I would never sell, bought players who I would never buy." - WIRE SERVICES

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