Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho expects ‘a more balanced’ Premier League title race with both Chelsea and Liverpool participating in Europe – unlike last season. The Red Devils had the additional pressure of switching between competitions last term, but they still managed to lift the Europa League which has assured them of a place in next season’s Champions League.
Speaking to ESPN, Mourinho admitted that the balance would be equal among the clubs ahead of the new season with the top seven clubs including Chelsea and Liverpool having to tackle the European schedule next term. Chelsea romped towards their fifth Premier League title in style last season while Liverpool managed to clinch a Champions League qualification spot by finishing fourth overall.
“There is one thing – this season is going to be a little more balanced because of the fact the top six are all in European competitions,” he told ESPN. “Not like last season, when Chelsea and Liverpool played all season one match per week, with all the others playing in Europeans competitions – especially us, playing in Europa League”
Despite the limited schedule, Mourinho insists that former club Chelsea deserved to win the Premier League title last term, although playing one game per week reduces the chances of suspensions as well as injuries.
He added: “Next season, six teams, and also Everton, are going to play in Europe and that is going to create a new situation for Chelsea and Liverpool. I don’t want to say it was ‘key,’ because if I say that, I don’t want to take credit from the credit that [Chelsea] deserve. But obviously, to play one match per week and one, two or three days off during the week, have no injuries or no accumulation.”
Mourinho have maintained a 100 percent record in their pre-season friendlies in the United States with wins over LA Galaxy, Real Salt Lake and Manchester City, whom they beat earlier today by a 2-0 scoreline.
The Special One celebrated an EFL Cup and Europa League double during his debut season with Manchester United, and he will have his sights on further glory with the Premier League and Champions League the main priorities ahead of the 2017/18 season.
Manchester United have pursued the signings of Victor Lindelof and Romelu Lukaku so far this summer, and they could be one more addition to the squad, according to the Portuguese head coach.