After starting the season on a high, Manchester United players got their first major setback last Saturday after they lost to Manchester City. Manager Jose Mourinho reportedly let the players have a go at each other in the locker room during halftime so that they could let off some steam.
According to Give Me Sport, the Manchester United locker room at Old Trafford bore witness to “a blazing row” between the players during the halftime of the Manchester Derby. Jose Mourinho surely had a lot of scalding words for his players after they let the visitors dominate the first half.
However, the Manchester United players were caught up in the heat of the moment and decided to have a go at each other. Witnesses reported that Mourinho allowed his star-studded roster to air out their frustrations. After a few minutes, Mourinho stepped in to calm everyone down and motivate them for the second half. He also brought in Marcus Rashford and Ander Herrera.
Despite the substitutions, the team was unable to overcome the 2-1 deficit. United improved in the second half but the scoreboard remained untouched. Their lone goal in the first half came when they were already two goals down. Kevin de Bruyne and Kelechi Iheanacho already netted for Manchester City before Zlatan Ibrahimovic pulled one back for the home side.
Luckily for United, City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo messed up his debut appearance. The fresh signing gifted Zlatan with the opportunity to score after he blocked a free kick and sent it straight at the striker’s feet. While the blunder was embarrassing for Bravo, the final result was the most important thing.
Pep Guardiola managed a victory against his rival Jose Mourinho in a battle of pride for the managers, the clubs and the fans. It is still early in the season, and it remains to be seen if the dressing room dynamics will change for Manchester United. Earlier in the season, Mourinho had spoken about the positive relationship among the players despite having several superstars like Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and Wayne Rooney, among others.