There are still four games to play in the Premier League for Manchester United, but the title has already been snapped up by Manchester City, and Jose Mourinho believes that his side have paid the price for their inconsistencies through the season.
The 2017/18 campaign started off with the two Manchester giants going toe-to-toe with each other, matching each other’s results on an almost weekly basis. However, while Manchester City have continued that sensational form throughout the season, United have dropped points and have fallen 13 points behind.
Speaking after United’s 2-0 victory over Bournemouth on Wednesday, Jose Mourinho rued that fact that his side had dropped points in games they were highly expected to win.
“The change has to be based on their attitude, their mentality,” said Mourinho of United’s players.
“This season of course was a much better season in the Premier League for us than the last one – the last one we finished sixth.
“We are quite safe now in the top four and we have a big chance to finish second, we already have more points than at the end of last season.
“But we need to be more consistent in our approach.
“I know why you win, I know why you don’t win. OK, no doubts about City’s quality, and that in any circumstances they would win this title because they are the better (team).
“I’ve spoken with my players – I think we are inconsistent. And we are inconsistent many times in our attitude.
“We didn’t lose points in the duels against direct opponents, we lost points against teams that were promoted. And we’ve lost points against teams that are probably going to be relegated.
“We were not consistent, and we’ve paid the price.”
United are almost certain to finish in the top four, and are front runners to finish second in the league, their highest position for five years since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson.
However, they have dropped points to the likes of newly promoted sides Huddersfield and Newcastle, while also dropping points to relegation candidates West Brom and Stoke this season.
Victory in those four games alone would see United just two points behind City in the race for the title.