Jose Mourinho and Jurgen Klopp.

Jose: I think Liverpool will respect our strengths

Saturday 15 December 2018 22:30

Jose Mourinho feels Liverpool will know that they are in for a tough game against his Manchester United team at Anfield on Sunday.

A win for United would not only aid our bid to climb the Premier League table but also inflict a first league defeat of the campaign on our in-form opponents and arch-rivals.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference at the Aon Training Complex on Friday, the boss warned that Jurgen Klopp's team will be fully aware of the dangers that United also possess.

"They [Liverpool] have this feeling that I also had when my teams were top of the league," said Jose. "It looks like everything goes in your direction, so I think they're obviously very, very confident, but I think they are not stupid. I think they also know that the match they have is difficult."

Mourinho: We'll fight for the victory Video

Mourinho: We'll fight for the victory

"We will have a team capable of going there to fight for the victory," said Jose at the start of his press conference...

"They also know that we have our weaknesses and our strengths, and I think they will respect our strengths," he added. "I think they know that the game is very difficult for them.

"They know that they need every point if they want to be champions, so I think they are professionals. I think they are professionals and being professionals is respecting Manchester United. They know that we can go there and win."

Mourinho was also asked about the rise of one of his former players, Mo Salah. The 26-year-old played under Jose in his second spell at Chelsea - where he scored twice in 12 league appearances before being sent to Roma in Italy, first on loan and then on a permanent transfer in 2016.

When asked whether his knowledge of Salah from his time at Stamford Bridge would come in handy on Sunday, Jose admitted that the forward's development means he's almost a completely unrecognisable player.

"I think he's developed incredibly well at every level," said Mourinho. "Physically, amazing development. He was a fast, fragile boy and now he's a fast, strong man. He hadn't psychologically adapted, coming direct from a small club in Switzerland [FC Basel] to a big club in England and the Premier League [Chelsea]. It was too much.

"Now he plays everywhere against any team - completely different than the potential player we bought from Basel to Chelsea. He was a project player then and now he's one of the best players in the world. So I don't think the fact that I know him helps me, because I knew the project player and now he's a top player."

Salah played under Mourinho during his second spell in charge at Chelsea.

In his first season at Liverpool, Salah won the PFA Player of the Year and the Premier League's Golden Boot as he bagged 32 goals in 36 league appearances. However, Jose feels that, while the Egyptian is one of the key players in Klopp's squad, he's just one of many stars that United will need to keep tabs on in Sunday's match.

"Every match we try to analyse opponents," said Mourinho. "We try to analyse the strengths and the weaknesses of the opponent and, when you go to Liverpool, they have many strengths. So, do we have to think about him? I think we have to think about him. Of course we have to think about him and try to think of the best way to cope with a fantastic player like he is."

Reading this in our app? If not, you might miss some exclusive features not found on Download the Official App here.

'We'll be fighting to win there'


Jose Mourinho discusses how he'll approach his fifth Liverpool game as United boss.

Your essential guide to Liverpool v United


Make sure you're ready for Sunday's Premier League showdown at Anfield with our match preview.

Anfield days to remember


We recall five memorable matches against Liverpool on Merseyside ahead of Sunday's visit.

Rashford: Fans give us vital energy


Marcus Rashford says United supporters have helped him to achieve some impressive stats on the pitch.