Legendary Jamaican sprinter and Manchester United fan has branded the team he supports ‘boring’ under Jose Mourinho’s management. The Olympic gold medallist will turn out at Old Trafford this weekend for Soccer Aid for Unicef, alongside a host of other celebrities and former players in the Rest of the World XI, and he’ll surely be hoping to provide more entertainment than he feels his side provided last season after openly criticising them in quotes given to Goal.com.
“We started off well but then we got boring after a while,” said Bolt. “I didn’t like that because I’m used to Manchester United being an attacking team, but that’s how Mourinho plays.”
It’s quite surprising to see such a high-profile figure be so openly critical of United, but there’s nothing incorrect about Bolt’s assessment of the team. After a solid start in the Premier League, United fell eight points behind Manchester City after losing December’s derby, and never got close to catching them again. Disappointing exits in the League Cup and Champions League were followed by an FA Cup final defeat to Chelsea last month, and the second half of this season was characterised by a pedestrian style with little creativity or chances created in most games.
Bolt’s criticisms actually mirror the vast majority of United fans who have grown weary of Mourinho’s tactics and the recurring problems that the Portuguese has run into, namely openly criticising his young players and a lack of tactical variation. Quite how things will change should the former Chelsea boss show some flexibility in the upcoming campaign remains to be seen, but the recent signings of FC Porto’s Diogo Dalot and Shakhtar Dontesk’s Fred are a step in the right direction. Not only that, they should help to raise the quality level of a squad that has too many hangers-on that either aren’t required or of sufficient quality to help United get back to the highest level.