Manager Mourinho says Manchester United should fight for bigger trophies after their 3-2 win over Southampton in League Cup final at Wembley
Man United players pose with the winners' trophy after beating Southampton 3-2 in the League Cup final at Wembley on Sunday. Pic/AFP
London: Jose Mourinho has challenged his Manchester United stars to use their dramatic League Cup final win against Southampton as a springboard to bigger prizes.
Mourinho lifted the first major trophy of his United reign on Sunday after Zlatan Ibrahimovic's late header clinched a 3-2 victory at Wembley. The 54-year-old is the first United manager to win a major competition in his maiden season at Old Trafford and the 19th trophy of his glittering career made him only the third boss, after Alex Ferguson and Brian Clough, to enjoy four League Cup triumphs.
Man United boss Jose Mourinho
Now Mourinho wants his players to learn from the winning feeling as they chase FA Cup and Europa League titles this term. "The reality is that we want more: my contract is long, I have two more years with this one, so hopefully I can win more," Mourinho said.
"This season it's difficult, but we have to try to fight for more." Despite the landmark occasion Mourinho wore a stern expression. But he insisted he was merely hiding his pride because he wanted his players to soak up the adulation. "I'm very happy. I always try to put myself in the secondary position — it's important for the fans, the club, the players — but it's also important for me," he said.
"I put a lot of pressure on myself, you (the media) put a lot of pressure on me. I wanted to win a major trophy at every club. By doing that with Manchester United it's quite the sense of relief because it was a big target for me. I feel very happy with the victory and the fact I did it four times, the same as Ferguson and Clough."
After watching United blow a two-goal lead as Manolo Gabbiadini struck twice for the Saints before Ibrahimovic's winner, Mourinho conceded his team had been fortunate. "You could feel in the game the difference in freshness. Southampton were in Spain, preparing, and we were playing Europa League and FA Cup," he said.