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I don't play that game: Mourinho refuses to respond to Pogba 'virus' dressing room spat rumours

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho's relationship with midfielder Paul Pogba has come back under the spotlight again in the wake of Saturday's 2-2 draw with Southampton.

Reports have emerged of a post-match dressing room exchange between the pair in which Mourinho is said to have called Pogba a "virus".

When questioned about that on Tuesday, Mourinho said: "I don't play the game of the suggestions.

"One thing is an interview I gave to Brazilian television, that you can go there and see what I told. Another thing is to be quoted, quoted by who, how? I don't speak about that. I don't play that game."

The results at the weekend left seventh-placed United eight points behind fourth-placed Arsenal, who they face at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

Mourinho was quoted as saying to Brazilian outlet RedeTV after the Southampton game, when referring to his ambitions for the rest of the season: "Try almost the miracle to end in fourth."

When asked about his comment during a press conference on Tuesday, Mourinho said: "I don't know if I said (that) or if I didn't. But if I used that word (miracle), it is not what I feel at all.

"I think we are eight or nine points from fourth. I don't think we need a miracle at all. I think we need a good run of results, I think we don't need to waste points where we shouldn't waste."

He added: "Before the Crystal Palace game (a goalless home draw on November 24) I said that my hopes, my targets were to be, in the end of December, in that position.

"The target changed but changed in the sense of let's try to close the distance as much as we can and try to be by the end of December very close to these positions.

"I think far from a miracle, we just need to not be so unlucky with problems that we have. We need some players to perform better than we are, we need as a team to perform better than we are, but far from a miracle, not at all."

Ahead of the midweek round of games, Everton are above United in the table in sixth place.

Mourinho was asked what he would say to people who say United should never be in seventh place.

And he said: "I think Manchester United, seventh place - I can agree.

"In spite of the investment Everton made, (which) was phenomenal, and obviously there was a great improvement in that team from last season, I don't think Everton is going to be in front of Manchester United by the end of the season.

"I think clearly everybody knows that there are six teams that should, all of them, stay in the first six positions.

"I think at the end of the season once more the top six will be done by the six teams that we all know that have that responsibility to finish in the top six."

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