Jose Mourinho is confident Manchester United will beat Liverpool
Mourinho has had a long-running feud with Liverpool fans ever since he told them to “ssshhhh” at the 2005 League Cup final when he was Chelsea manager.
He famously wrestled with Steven Gerrard on the touchline when he tried to prevent the Liverpool skipper taking a quick throw-in and antagonised the fans even more when he strode along the touchline cheering and beating his chest when Chelsea ended Liverpool’s title bid in 2014.
But he claims he loves Anfield – calling it a “beautiful place” – and poured scorn on former United players such as Gary Neville and Mikael Silvestre, who have described the atmosphere at Liverpool-United games as intimidating.
“We know that the fans have huge animosity against Manchester United historically, but this is what we want so we are very happy to have one more opportunity in our careers to play in this beautiful conditions,” said Mourinho. “It’s beautiful to play at Anfield. Beautiful.
“I’m surprised when people talk about big atmospheres in a negative way, I’m even more surprised when I hear former, big players, speak about atmospheres like it’s something sinister, something that worries.
Liverpool vs Manchester United: Sky Sports pundits name biased combined XI
Fri, October 13, 2017
Sky Sports pundits have been naming their combined Liverpool and Manchester United XIs, and there is definitely a preference for Red Devils players in the final line-up based on their choices
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Sky Sports pundits have named their combined Liverpool and Manchester United XI
I have won big matches at Anfield, I have lost big matches at Anfield
“It motivates us, it is something we want, it is something that if we could have every match, we would have every match.
“You know, when Barcelona played against Las Palmas with an empty stadium, do you think the players were happy with that? Do you think Las Palmas players wouldn’t prefer to play with the Nou Camp full of people and a great atmosphere?
“I never see a player complain, ‘oh, this atmosphere was very strong’ – we complain when the atmosphere is flat.
“When we play at home and we don’t see big enthusiasm in the people, we complain. So we go to play against a big team with a big tradition in an amazing stadium with great tradition.”
Jose Mourinho's Manchester United drew 0-0 at Liverpool last season
Mourinho saw Chelsea’s Champions League hopes ended twice at the semi-finals stage at Anfield but has only ever lost one Premier League game there. After the 2014 game that ended an 11-match winning streak Mourinho laid the blame for the defeat on Steven Gerrard who slipped and let in Demba Ba for the opening goal in a 2-0 win. Manchester City took full advantage and went on to win the title.
He added: “I have won big matches at Anfield, I have lost big matches at Anfield. I have left that stadium so happy, I have left that stadium so sad. Their supporters left that stadium in the direction of the Champions League final, and they left that stadium devastated because they lost a title, almost in the last game.
“This is football, this is the beauty of football and again, I like to play there because everything is good. The result can be good or bad, but to play there is great. I did that with Chelsea and I did that once with Manchester United and I hope to play there many times more.”