Jose Mourinho had once famously termed several of his first team players as ‘untouchable’ when he was Chelsea manager
In December 2006, Mourinho had said that many of his players had an ‘untouchable’ status in the first team because of the level of their performances. The Portuguese manager named nine players including Frank Lampard, John Terry and Petr Cech.
Now almost a decade later, Mourinho has said that there are no untouchables in his current time. Ahead of Manchester United’s Europa League game against Fenerbahce, Mourinho stated that even the likes of Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic aren’t untouchable in his current team.
“That was 11 years ago, a different Premier League and situation – it was the best team by far,” said Mourinho when asked if Pogba and Ibrahimovic were untouchable at Manchester United, according to the Guardian.
“Untouchable in our team has to be the spirit, the commitment, the pride, the commitment to the club, respect to the fans. That has to be untouchable, not players.”
Ibrahimovic and Pogba were the two blockbuster signings of the summer for Manchester United. The Swiss striker had notched up more than 50 goals in all competitions for PSG last season, while 23-year-old Pogba had emerged as the most highly rated young player in the world.
Zlatan arrived on a free transfer, and initially showed just why he is still considered one of the best strikers around even at the age of 34. Four goals in his first three competitive games for United had fans dreaming, but the goals have dried up for him since then.
Paul Pogba became the world’s most expensive player when he moved to Man United for a reported €110 million. However, he hasn’t lived up to the billing so far, and made little impact in big games such as the Manchester derby and the match against Liverpool at Anfield this past Monday.
The pair have some work to do if they are to attain the status that the likes of Terry and Lampard had in Mourinho’s very successful Chelsea team of 10 years ago.