Manchester United “just can’t perform” under Jose Mourinho, says Michael Owen, with mismanagement and poor recruitment leaving the club with little choice but to make another change in the dugout.
The Red Devils, in what has already been a testing 2018-19 campaign, hit a new low on Sunday as they suffered a 3-1 defeat away at arch-rivals Liverpool.
Mourinho’s men offered little in a highly-charged contest, with Jesse Lingard’s strike handed to them by a mistake from Alisson, and they now find themselves 11 points adrift of the top four.
Owen believes United are paying the price for failings on and off the pitch, with heads starting to drop at an alarming rate, and has suggested that only parting with a beleaguered boss will present those at Old Trafford with any opportunity to salvage something from a disappointing season.
The former Red Devils striker told Optus Sport: “I don’t really see anything changing. I honestly don’t.
“I think the players are far better than what they are showing but Mourinho, two and a half seasons now?
“If he’d been here six months, I’d think, ‘Wait until his players come in and he gets a transfer window and it all beds in'. Two-and-a-half years, is anything going to change now?
“It’s been pretty similar - in general they’ve not even threatened to win the league and they’ve gone and spent money which means you should be close to winning the league.
“Added to that, all the players he inherited, the best goalkeeper in the world, a good few youngsters coming through, it should be a lot better.
“I can’t see any which way where they’re going to improve. Until something changes, I can’t see anything improving for them I’m afraid.”
Owen added when pressed on whether Mourinho’s rivals, such as Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp, would get any more out of this United side: “I think the bigger question is, player for player, are they [United] better [than Liverpool]? If they were managed by Jurgen Klopp let’s say, would they be a better team? They’d be miles better, 100 per cent.
“You’ve got Alexis Sanchez who has been the best player in the Premier League for three years and I know he’s injured but even when he was playing he’s not a shadow of what he was.
“[Romelu] Lukaku the same, [Paul] Pogba. The only good players that United have got at the moment in terms of playing at their maximum is [David] De Gea and [Marcus] Rashford. Those players were given to him.
“His signings are really disappointing, [Victor] Lindelof, Fred, there’s so many players underperforming. If Klopp or Guardiola was managing this team, they would be a lot better. They’ve got great players, they’re just not playing well.
“They’re much better for their international teams, we’ve seen them performing great for other teams, all of a sudden they arrive at United and they’re not performing at all.
“Yes, you can blame the players, individual mistakes, it’s not the manager kicking the ball out there, however, I think that Man City and Liverpool are a reflection of their managers, the way they want to press, the way they’ve got loads of energy and all these different attributes that they’re very good at.
“This Man United team at the moment just can’t perform and the buck eventually stops with the manager. We all know they can do more. They’re better players than this. I just don’t think anyone’s happy at the club right now.”