Of course Jose Mourinho’s first trophy with Manchester United was won last August when the team triumphed over Leicester City in the English curtain raiser the Community Shield. But for football fans and pundits alike his first trophy as United’s manager started on Sunday with victory in the EFL Cup over Southampton.
Mourinho has become the first United manager in history to win a trophy in his debut season, and it’s something that will be welcomed at a club who have won just one trophy- the FA Cup since Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013.
It was a piece of silverware that was very much needed at the club, who in the first three months of Mourinho’s appointment were hardly living up to expectations. Even though the Red Devils still lie outside of the top four positions the points difference is just two for a Champions League finish and five to 2nd place.
As for the cup final, we left with Southampton in our hearts, the better side on the day did lose and they will rue the goal that was disallowed. However United had Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the 35 year old proved once again what a great striker he is.
The Swede who should, by all rights, be slowing down is like a vintage red Bordeaux and has excelled again in another league, with a new team. His brace was the difference in the game and his goals undeniably brought the cup back to Manchester.
Had United lost this match we may have had a ripple effect where their league form could have suffered. But with this win, and with United’s talisman Juan Mata easily being one of the best mid fielders in the Premier league this season, there really is an installed belief that United can go far. Hope is back at Old Trafford that there is no doubt.
Whilst winning the league in his debut season looks highly unlikely for Mourinho, there are still plenty of positives to take note of. A cup victory is already under their belts and they are in the quarter finals of both the FA Cup and the Europa League- another trophy this season coupled with a top four finish will be rightly deemed as a successful season that will certainly put paid to Mourinho’s nightmare second season at Chelsea and frighteningly for United’s opponents there is a chance and a very realistic one at that, that the Devils are back once more.