Jose Mourinho Defends Horror Challenge After Paul Pogba Inspires Manchester United Victory

Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo
Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo, right, at Selhurst Park, London, December 14. Rojo escaped a red card for a rash challenge on Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha. Christopher Lee/Getty

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has defended Marcos Rojo following a vicious tackle made during the team's victory over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Wednesday.

Rojo jumped in two-footed on Palace winger Wilfried Zaha but escaped without punishment, the second time in three games the Argentine has committed a rash challenge without receiving a red card.

In United's 1-1 draw with Everton on December 5, Rojo, who has become a fixture in Mourinho's first team despite appearing to be on his way out of the club earlier in the season, launched into a similar two-footed tackle on Idrissa Gueye.

"Rojo is playing phenomenally," Mourinho said when asked about the tackle. "He is playing really well—emotional but very clean."

Palace manager Alan Pardew suggested Rojo was "lucky" to have got away with the challenge.

"It's another two-footed tackle, I think he did one before [against Everton]. He was a bit fortunate to get away with that," Pardew said.

United is back in action on Saturday evening when it faces West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns.