Fellaini: Mourinho asked us to be men

Manchester United fought back for a dramatic victory against Newcastle United after Jose Mourinho asked his players "to be men".

Jose Mourinho's future at Manchester United remains unclear.   -  Getty Images

Marouane Fellaini has revealed Jose Mourinho asked the Manchester United players "to be men and not afraid" prior to its dramatic comeback victory over Newcastle United.

Match report

Amid fierce speculation over Mourinho's future, United fell two goals behind inside 10 minutes on Saturday – the first time in Premier League history that has happened at Old Trafford.

But they rallied to score three goals inside the final 20 minutes, with Juan Mata and Anthony Martial netting before Alexis Sanchez headed in a 90th-minute winner.

Fellaini, who came on at half-time in place of Scott McTominay, told BT Sport: "The manager asked us to be men and to not be afraid and just play. 

"That's what we did. The first half was a difficult moment for us, but we were more aggressive in the second half and we played more direct and created more chances."

Mata, meanwhile, feels positive results can fix any crisis in football, even a story that has generated the level of debate as Mourinho's United future. 

"We needed something like that," he said. "It was very difficult to come back but we created more chances than we scored.

"We gave everything we had to win and in the second half we felt we had nothing to lose, and it is natural to create more when that happens.

"It is a relief and we feel that we got what we needed. In football, results fix everything. In the second half we tried especially for the fans, and tonight they go home happy."

After their first win in five games, United face matches against Chelsea, Juventus and Everton after the international break.

Support Sportstar

Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos