Manchester, UK : Tottenham Hotspur claimed their first victory 3-0 at the home of Manchester United since 2014, leaving boss Jose Mourinho on the ropes. It was an impressive, clinical performance from Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham Hotspur, with all three goals coming after the break.
The Portuguese boss, Mourinho, who suffered the biggest home loss of his career, took a moment to salute the fans before walking down the tunnel at full-time – a move some have taken as a sign of his possible imminent departure.
Lucas Moura scored twice as Tottenham Hotspur romped to a 3-0 Premier League win over Manchester United at Old Trafford on Monday as Jose Mourinho’s team’s defensive frailties were brutally exposed once again.
It was an impressive, clinical performance from Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham, with all three goals coming after the break, and it left United and Mourinho facing very searching questions.
United have lost two of their opening three games of the season and conceded six goals in the last two games.
After the debacle of last week’s 3-2 defeat by Brighton, Mourinho made six changes and dropped both central defenders, Eric Bailly and Victor Lindelof.
With first starts of the season for Antonio Valencia, Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic and Jesse Lingard there was a stronger look about United.
Mourinho opted for a three-man defence with the recalled English pair of Chris Smalling and Phil Jones joined by Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera.
United initially showed promise in an even first half with Brazilian Fred finding plenty of space they and should have taken the lead through Romelu Lukaku after he was presented with a gift of a back-pass from Danny Rose.
After rounding Hugo Lloris, however, the Belgian striker screwed his shot just wide.
Spurs struck twice inside the first seven minutes of the second half as they maintained their 100 percent record.
Harry Kane shrewdly backed away before attacking the ball as he leapt above Jones to head home a Kieran Trippier corner in the 50th minute and two minutes later Moura slipped the ball home after a fine break and low cross from Christian Eriksen.
Moura wrapped up the victory, waltzing past Chris Smalling with ease before confidently drilling the ball past David De Gea.
Mourinho had made clear throughout the close-season that he wanted a new central defender and his team have shown in the past nine days exactly why.
Mourinho’s side will look to bounce back from consecutive defeats as the Red Devils travel to Turf Moor to play Burnley next Sunday.
Spurs will be looking to keep up their 100% record at the start of the season as they take on high flyers Watford at Vicarage Road.
Spurs had lost their previous four games at this stadium without scoring a goal. Now they had two in quick succession but an honorary mention should also go to Hugo Lloris for his save, at 1-0, to turn away Lukaku’s goalbound shot. Pochettino’s decision to name Lloris as his captain will polarise opinion, just a few days after the goalkeeper was arrested on a drink-driving charge, but that save changed the course of the evening.
“It is a massive victory for us and I am very proud of the performance,” said Pochettino. “It is difficult to beat Manchester United at Old Trafford. They were better in the first half but we dominated from then on.”
Mourinho, taunted by Tottenham’s fans predicting his imminent sacking, left the field by standing in front of the Stretford End and applauding the smattering of home supporters left in the famous home end.
Mourinho was goaded with chants of “you’re getting sacked in the morning” by the travelling Tottenham fans.
A second consecutive defeat piles even more pressure on the Portuguese coach as United now trail Spurs, Liverpool and Chelsea by six points and stand four adrift of champions Manchester City just three games into the new campaign.
The odds on Mourinho losing his job have been slashed in recent weeks as on top of adverse results, he has clashed with the club’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward over a lack of signings.
However, he rallied on his critics by citing his record of winning the Premier League three times over two spells at Chelsea.
“I won more Premierships alone than the other 19 managers together. Three for me, two for them. Respect!” a fiery Mourinho raged at reporters on exiting his post-match press conference.
Mourinho stood in front of Old Trafford’s Stretford End at the end of the game to applaud the home fans, who didn’t boo his side at full-time despite the result.
“Today I had the proof the best judge are the supporters,” added Mourinho.