Jose Mourinho lashed out at his critics after Manchester United’s thrilling 3-2 come-from-behind victory against Newcastle on Saturday, calling the attacks against him “wickedness” and “man-hunting.”
Three goals in the last 20 minutes by Juan Mata, Anthony Martial, and Alexis Sanchez earned United its first English Premier League win since the opening round, as it rallied from conceding two goals in the first 10 minutes.
United’s manager has been under mounting speculation he’ll be fired because of a string of poor results and for frequent verbal attacks on his own players, but he came out fighting after the team earned its first win in five matches in all competitions.
“It happened that we started nervous, the team in my opinion didn’t cope well with the pressure of the man-hunting,” Mourinho said.
“I am 55 years old. It is the first time I see man-hunting. I can cope with it. I can live with it. Some of the boys, in spite of them not being the man that is hunted, they are not coping well with it.
“This is new, it makes me not just a better manager but an even better person. I understand things in the human nature nowadays and in the industry where I work. I used to love it, I still love it, but it is different.
“There is too much wickedness in something that should be beautiful. I cope with it with some sadness. I am mature, I am a big boy, and I will deal with it.”
Newcastle, without a league win, took complete control with early goals from Brazilian wingback Kenedy and Yoshinori Muto.
The 26-year-old Muto, making his first Premier League start after six substitute appearances, doubled the lead by holding off Ashley Young inside the box and driving in a shot with his left foot.
Muto was keen not to waste his opportunity after joining the club from German first-division club Mainz this summer.
“If I wasted this chance, I wouldn’t know when or if another opportunity would come my way,” Muto said. “I wasn’t aiming my shot. I just tried to strike it as well as I could.”
Mourinho reacted by bringing on Spain midfielder Juan Mata for center half Eric Bailly after 19 minutes, but the boos still echoed around Old Trafford at the interval.
United was a different team in the second half, and it came as no surprise when Mata curled in a free kick in the 70th minute.
Martial equalized five minutes later with a fierce low drive following an exchange of passes with Paul Pogba.
Substitute Sanchez then sent the crowd wild with delight when he headed in the winner in the 90th.