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I won't judge our season on one game: Mourinho


Big point: Jose Mourinho says he will analyse United’s season overall, regardless of their result at Wembley

Big point: Jose Mourinho says he will analyse United’s season overall, regardless of their result at Wembley

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Big point: Jose Mourinho says he will analyse United’s season overall, regardless of their result at Wembley

Jose Mourinho insists Manchester United's campaign will not be defined by today's FA Cup final against Chelsea.

United finished second in the Premier League, a distant 19 points behind runaway champions Manchester City, but they have the chance to round off their campaign by lifting some silverware against the Blues at Wembley.

However, Mourinho said: "People can do what they want, you can analyse the way you want to analyse. I can also analyse the way I want to analyse.

"Of course it makes a difference, but it's one thing to make a difference and the other is to consider the season good or bad because of one match.

"I analyse the work I do, the effort I put in, and everything we all did at the club. That includes the most important people at the club: the players.

"I'm not going to analyse them because of one - of course, very important - match.

"I know the positive things and the negative things so I am not going to change my analysis of the season because of the result of one match. Not at all."

Some pundits have expressed fears that the showpiece could be a dull, cagey affair, especially given some of United's less than cavalier performances this season.

But Mourinho countered: "I don't understand... entertaining? Do you think 6-0 is entertaining? I don't think so.

"I think entertaining is emotional until the end, an open result until the end, everybody on their seats until the end, both dugouts nervous and tense with the unpredictability of the result.

"For me as a football lover, not as a manager, that's entertaining. I think it will be entertaining."

Winger Anthony Martial has been passed fit after overcoming a knee injury.

Mourinho also confirmed there would be no Wembley farewell for long-serving midfielder Michael Carrick, who retires at the end of the season.

United striker Romelu Lukaku needs a late fitness test on an ankle injury but Blues manager Antonio Conte is not paying too much attention to whether the former Chelsea man features or not.

The Italian said: "We're talking about an important player but Manchester United have the possibility to pick many important players.

"I don't know what the decision will be. But for sure, if Lukaku doesn't play there are great players to play instead of him.

"You don't change your plan or prepare your plan only for one player. If Lukaku is not playing it means they have another important striker. (Marcus) Rashford, for example, could play."

Mourinho will be desperately hoping Lukaku passes his late fitness test.

The United boss was unable to confirm whether the Belgium striker would overcome the ankle injury he suffered against Arsenal a fortnight ago in time.

Meanwhile, Paul Pogba has opened up on his time in Manchester, insisting that "when you're Mancunian once, you're Mancunian forever".

Across two separate spells at Old Trafford, the Frenchman has spent five years in total in the north west of England, and the former Juventus midfield maestro has said he now considers himself an honorary Mancunian.

"Am I more French or Mancunian? To be honest, I've been how many years outside France? I am French but I'm international too," he said.

"I have the passport and the French ID but the English driving licence.

"I've been in the (Manchester United) academy, loving the club - when you're Mancunian once, you're Mancunian forever."

Nonetheless, Pogba's future in Manchester has been repeatedly called into question this season after failing to consistently deliver.

The 26-year-old has flashed with brilliance at times for manager Mourinho, notably clinching a brace in United's stunning fightback against rivals Manchester City last month, but also developed a tendency to underwhelm.

Mourinho challenged Pogba over his inconsistent form, insisting in March of this year that the Frenchman must be the one to explain his shortcomings, and even dropped the player on multiple occasions throughout the campaign.

Speculation of a fallout between the two subsequently emerged but, for now, Pogba's focus remains fixed on helping guide United to domestic and European success.

"It would be nice to win the Champions League and the Premier League," he said. "That would be very nice.

"For a team, you want to win titles, you play to win. You can play the best football, and it's true we want to play and enjoy football, but if you don't win a title - it's good for the eyes, it's good for the eyes - but you don't win anything."

Belfast Telegraph