Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has denied that there are problems in the dressing room with his team.
Or rather, he has been unclear in what he’s actually saying, perhaps hinting that if the players really have downed tools because they don’t like him, then it is because they are dishonest and because they are not holding their end of the bargain up when they are paid hundreds of thousands of pounds of week.
Players are humans, so of course they won’t be at their best for a manager who mistreats them, but Mourinho has a point. The kind of rank incompetence and sloth that some players have been serving up, is inexcusable in almost any circumstance.
Speaking at the press conference before Manchester United 3-1 Arsenal to be played on Wednesday night, he went off on one, handily providing a story to bloggers and journalists with work obligations:
“I don’t understand that story,” the manager said. “If you think a player only plays, in your words, when he is behind the manager, what I have to call these players – or in this case, what you are calling them – is dishonest.
“A football player is paid – and very well paid – to be a professional. What is that? It is to train every day to his limits, to play every game to his limits, to behave socially according to the nature of his job, to respect the millions of fans around the world and to respect the hierarchies of the club.
“If a player doesn’t do that, it is one thing is to perform well and not so well, another thing is to be a professional. If you say a player plays well or badly because of how good a manager is, you are calling the player dishonest.”