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Manchester United 'a closed chapter', says Mourinho ahead of Old Trafford return

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    Agence France-Presse

London, United Kingdom   /   Tue, December 3, 2019   /   07:40 pm
 Manchester United 'a closed chapter', says Mourinho ahead of Old Trafford return Jose Mourinho (AFP/Oli Scarff)

Jose Mourinho says his time at Manchester United is "a closed chapter" and he is only interested in beating them when he takes his in-form Tottenham side to Old Trafford on Wednesday.

It is the new Tottenham manager's first return to the touchline at United's home ground since his sacking by the club last December.

"This is a closed chapter for me," said Mourinho, who has won all three of his matches in charge of Spurs. "I left the club, I took my time to process everything that happened, I took my time to prepare myself for the next challenge.

"Honestly, United for me is in my book of experiences, it's in my history book."

United are struggling under Mourinho's successor, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, but go into the game just two points behind fifth-placed Spurs.

"It is not for me to analyse United now," Mourinho said at his pre-match press conference. "I analyse them as an opponent, how they play. How can we beat them? How can they beat us? For me that is the important thing."

Mourinho is excited about the prospect of returning to Old Trafford.

He said: "I feel good, I like to play big matches, I like to play against the best teams and go back to a place where I was happy.

"I have a great relationship with the Manchester United supporters. I went back as a pundit and I was humbled by such a beautiful reception.

"Tomorrow I go back as the coach of the team that will try and beat Manchester United.

"I understand that what they want is the exact opposite of what I want. Of course during the match I expect them to forget me."

Reports say Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen has refused to sign a new deal with the club, while there has been speculation over the futures of Belgian defenders Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.

Mourinho said he was speaking with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy about the contract issues but refused to be drawn on the details.

"I'm not going to discuss these individual things," he said. "If I tell you that I didn't speak with Mr (Daniel) Levy about Eriksen, Alderweireld and Vertonghen, I would be lying. So, yes I'm speaking with Mr Levy about it."

"The important thing, really, is (they are) great professionals, big relationship with Tottenham, amazing understanding of what the club is and what we need from them," he added.

"So, all three ready to play, all three ready to forget the contractual situation."