Sports

Jose Mourinho Quotes In Full: Manchester United Boss’ Reaction To Europa League Win

Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho at Friends Arena, Stockholm, Sweden, May 24. Mourinho won his third trophy of the season and qualified for the Champions League. Mike Hewitt/Getty

Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United won its third trophy of the season in the Europa League final on Wednesday night, a victory that also booked the team’s place in next season’s Champions League.

Here, Newsweek covers the key topics that the Portuguese manager discussed after the game, including the Manchester bombing, qualifying for the Champions League, Wayne Rooney’s future and summer transfers.

On playing two days after the attacks:
“It's really hard and that's why on Tuesday we didn't want to have the press conference because we had to prepare ourselves to do our job and to forget events that are much more important than our job. The world goes on it doesn't stop and we have to do our job. I agree with the UEFA decision to play the match.”

Impact on Manchester:
"My thoughts are obviously with the victims of the tragedy in Manchester and with the families. The tragedy is in my mind. Maybe this victory will bring some happiness to Manchester, I don't know. I would obviously, me and everyone else, we would change this trophy for the people that lost their lives, that's obvious. But if I focus on the football side, I am really proud."

On United completing the trophy collection:
“For the team it means everything. It means a third trophy, it mean going back to the Champions League, it means playing the European Super Cup in Macedonia next August. For the club it means the last piece of the puzzle—now a club with every trophy in the world of football. It means a lot for me and the club and the boys.”

On sitting at Europe’s top table next season:
"We are in the Champions League in the right way and for me the right way is winning the Premier League or winning the Europa League. We were not strong enough to win the Premier League but we were strong enough to win the Europa League and we are back in the Champions League. The club now has every trophy in world football. We fought hard for this since the beginning. We totally deserved the win. I am so happy to see all the players, including the boys with the crutches, with the trophy."

How his team won the match:
"The team was fantastic from the first minute to the last minute. It was a fantastic collective performance, there were very good individual performances and we had total control of the game. We always thought that we could win the Europa League and we are very happy. We played intelligently, we did it in a comfortable way. We were much stronger than them. If you are dominant in the air you go long. There are lots of poets in football but poets don't win many trophies. We knew where we were better than Ajax and we exploited their weaknesses."

On a long slog of a season:
"And 64 matches out of 66 possible, which is incredible. I am very happy and I thank everyone that had a contribution for that, and I’m not speaking just about the players. Many other staff. The work they did to organise everything for us, for our families, to come to this important match with a short period of time, the way people dedicate themselves to that, to try to have our heads clean and focused and everything was perfect. So I thank everyone at the club that had a contribution for that."

The future of the club captain:
"Wayne Rooney was ready to play, he was a big option. But I didn't need to attack at 2-0. I told him yesterday that he could be the key man but he can perfectly be here next season. He is a very important player for us. If he stays next season I'd be very happy."

On the club’s summer transfer strategy:
“Ed Woodward has had my list, what I want, what I would like, for more than two months. So now it's up to him and the owners. I wish Mr Woodward all the success in his work because now it’s time for me to disconnect, because I’m very tired. I am going to land in Manchester, I am going to get a car to London, then to Portugal. I don't care about football for now. Now I am on holiday. I don't want to see any international friendlies, I am selfish. I can't do it. For me, enough is enough. It has been a very hard last few months, we were short of numbers. But with three trophies in one season and [qualifying for] the Champions League, I am very happy in my most difficult season as a manager."