Paul Scholes rates Manchester United’s chances of winning the Premier League title

Paul Scholes cannot see Manchester United challenging City and Liverpool (Picture: Getty)Paul Scholes does not expect Manchester United to challenge for the Premier League title this season.

The Red Devils were Manchester City’s closest challengers last term but still finished 19 points adrift of Pep Guardiola’s side.

United started their 2018-19 campaign with a 2-1 victory over Leicester City on Friday evening, but the general feeling is that the team are a way behind City and possibly even Liverpool.

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Jurgen Klopp signed five key players this summer and the Reds laid down a marker at the weekend, thrashing West Ham 4-0 at Anfield.

Scholes, a 11-time Premier League champion, cannot see Manchester United winning the title as he says they do not have the quality of City and Liverpool.

‘When you look at Manchester City, possibly Liverpool, I don’t think they [United] have the quality of those two teams at the minute,’ the legendary midfielder said.

Jose Mourinho is under pressure to close the gap on Manchester City (Picture: Getty)‘Liverpool have made some really good signings. United finished above them last season. I just don’t see United getting closer to City.

‘City are a really good side, great manager, some great players, a way of playing that they all know about and Manchester United seem to be not too sure what’s going on.

‘You don’t really know the team, you don’t really know the players, you don’t know how they’re going to perform from one week to the next.

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‘So I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t see them challenging for the league this year.’

Mourinho’s side are next in action on Sunday when they travel to the south coast to take on Chris Hughton’s Brighton.

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Jose Mourinho wanted to buy Liverpool summer signing Xherdan Shaqiri before Jurgen Klopp completed move

Mourinho missed out (Picture: Getty)Jose Mourinho was pipped to the chase by Liverpool in the race to sign Xherdan Shaqiri, with Jurgen Klopp getting the deal done before Manchester United opened talks with the Switzerland international.

The Portuguese manager was keen to bring the former Bayern Munich and Inter Milan winger to Old Trafford, who became available for just £12.5million after Stoke’s relegation to the Championship from the Premier League.

However, he couldn’t even get into a negotiating position with the ex-Chelsea manager as Klopp struck quickly and persuaded the Swiss to move to Anfield, according to Blick.

Shaqiri linked up with Klopp (Picture: Getty)Shaqiri was impressed with Klopp’s human nature and immediately decided to join Liverpool, despite being aware of United’s interest.

Southampton and West Ham were among the other clubs looking to sign him, but he opted to sign for the Reds.

The Switzerland international started Liverpool’s first match of the Premier League season on the bench, making his first appearance for the club with less than 10 minutes of normal time to play.

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Jose Mourinho takes swipe at Liverpool in transfer warning to Manchester United

Mourinho is worried about the quality of his current squad (Picture: EPA)Jose Mourinho predicts Manchester United are in for a ‘difficult season’ if the club does not make more signings before transfer deadline day.

United slumped to a 1-0 defeat to Bayern Munich in their final pre-season game, with Mourinho’s men failing to register a shot on target in 90 minutes.

Bayern spent most of the game in United’s half, and Mourinho has again expressed his concern about the quality of his squad.

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Liverpool have been the Premier League’s big spenders this summer, and Mourinho sent a warning to United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward about the club’s lack of transfer activity this summer.

‘My CEO knows what I want and I still have a few days to wait and see what happens,’ Mourinho said on MUTV.

‘The other clubs who compete with us are really strong and already have fantastic teams. Or they are investing massively like Liverpool, who are buying everything and everybody.

Bayern dominated Manchester United (Picture: AFP)

(Picture: Getty)‘If we don’t make our team better it will be a difficult season for us.’

United have made three signings this summer, bringing in £47million midfielder Fred, defender Diogo Dalot and reserve goalkeeper Lee Grant.

Liverpool have enjoyed a far more productive window, with the signings of Naby Keita, Fabinho, Alisson and Xherdan Shaqiri for a combined £170m.

Manchester United’s pre-season results & fixtures

Club America 1-1 Man Utd

San Jose Earthquakes 1-3 Man Utd

AC Milan 1-1 Man Utd (8-9 pens)

Liverpool 4-1 Man Utd

Real Madrid 1-2 Man Utd

Bayern Munich 1-0 Man Utd

(Picture: Getty)

(Picture: Rex Features)United kick off their season against Leicester City on Friday, and the club seem to have heard Mourinho’s warnings.

The Red Devils opened talks with Bayern over a £44m deal to bring centre-back Jerome Boateng to Old Trafford.

United fans will be hoping their manager gets his wish with the club expected to challenge for the league title this season.

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Jose Mourinho criticises Anthony Martial for missing Manchester United’s defeat to Liverpool

The Frenchman left United’s tour of the US to see the birth of his child (Picture: Getty)Jose Mourinho has criticised Manchester United winger Anthony Martial for not returning to the club’s pre-season tour of the United States following the birth of his son.

The French winger – who wants to leave Old Trafford this summer – was given permission to fly from Los Angeles to Paris last week to witness the birth of his son with partner Melanie Da Cruz.

Mourinho said that he had ‘no right’ to prevent Martial from leaving United’s pre-season tour, though he had expected the 22-year-old to return much sooner.

Martial’s son, Swan, was born on Thursday, and two days later United took on Liverpool in a pre-season friendly in Michigan.

The Red Devils’ threadbare squad were soundly beaten on Saturday evening, losing 4-1 to their Premier League rivals, and Mourinho believes Martial should have re-joined the squad in time to play against Liverpool.

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He told MUTV: ‘Anthony Martial, he had the baby, and after the baby was born – beautiful baby, full of health, thank god – he should be here and he’s not here.

‘So we have Alexis [Sanchez] and [Juan] Mata to play every minute of every match. And now we have Real Madrid, and after that Bayern Munich.’

Mourinho is not impressed with the commitment of some of his players (Picture: Reuters)Mourinho was also critical of right-back Antonio Valencia, saying the injury that caused the Ecuadorian to fly back to Manchester was brought on by overindulgence during the off-season.

He added: ‘Antonio Valencia came from holiday, I think too much holiday for him, his condition was not good when he came back. Now injury, and also has to go back.’

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Jose Mourinho takes another swipe at Liverpool moments before Manchester United’s friendly clash

The Portuguese coach could not resist another little dig at Liverpool (Picture: Getty)Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has played down the significance of Saturday’s pre-season clash with Liverpool due to the horde of players he is missing.

The Red Devils are in Michigan for the next leg of their tour of the United States, having already faced off against Club America, San Jose Earthquakes and AC Milan – all of which were drawn.

In the build-up to the match against Liverpool, Mourinho took aim at the club’s £176million summer spent, and he had another little dig shortly before kick-off.

Man Utd face Liverpool at the Big House where over 90,000 are expected to watch (Getty)‘It’s Liverpool first team versus Manchester United kids,’ Mourinho told reporters as he got off the team bus. ‘For the last two years they have not been able to beat us, today they will think they have a chance.’

Speaking to MUTV, he expanded: ‘I think it can be a friendly, especially for us. I think for them maybe not because for the past two years they couldn’t beat us, and I think they have a big chance today to do it.

‘So with the enthusiasm of the crowd, lovely people that come here, love for clubs, love for football, they will be full of motivation to do it.

‘But our boys are going to try their best. Lots of kids, lots of players who were on loan and probably will be next season. But we try to give them the message of enjoy the game and the beauty of so many people and make it competitive.’

He continued: ‘I hope the kids can enjoy it. We’ll start with five kids who were on loan last season. The others have already played four consecutive games in a week. We are in trouble.

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‘[Liverpool] have their best team, their best players – apart from only Firmino and Alisson everybody is here. So it’s going to be hard for us, so I hope for a good answer.’

United, who are still without a number of their World Cup stars, have only lost once to Liverpool in their last 10 meetings in all competitions – a 2-0 loss at Anfield in the Europa League in March 2016.

Mourinho has tried to ramp up the pressure on Liverpool heading into the new season after they signed Naby Keita, Fabinho, Xherdan Shaqiri and Alisson, saying that silverware should be the minimum expectation.

Mourinho is still without any players who made the quarter-finals of the World Cup (Getty)Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Mourinho said: ‘Maybe this season finally you demand they win.

‘Now you have to demand and say the team – with the investments you are making last season and you make now, that will probably be the record of the Premier League this season, a team that was a finalist in the Champions League – you have to say you are a big candidate, you have to win.’

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Is Man Utd vs Liverpool on TV? UK time, TV channel, live stream and odds for International Champions Cup

Jose Mourinho and Jurgen Klopp will meet again (Picture: Getty)Liverpool and Manchester United meet on neutral territory on Saturday night as they clash in the International Champions Cup in Michigan.

United have played once in the pre-season tournament so far, beating AC Milan on penalties whilst the Reds have beaten Manchester City but lost to Borussia Dortmund.

The new Premier League season is now less than two weeks away so both Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho are looking to put their final touches to their plans for the campaign.

Arsenal and Chelsea are also in action in the International Champions Cup on Saturday, which runs until 11 August, after the start of the Premier League.

A lot is expected of Naby Keita this season (Picture: Getty Images)When is Manchester United vs Liverpool?

The match is on Saturday, 28 July at the Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor.

It kicks-off at 10.05pm UK time.

Luke Shaw will have a part to play for Man Utd in Michigan (Picture: Getty Images)Is Man Utd vs Liverpool on TV and is there a live stream?

The game is being shown on television live on both MUTV and LFC TV if you have subscriptions to the services.

Similarly, you can live stream the game on the websites of both those services.

Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane share a moment (Picture: Getty Images)What are the odds? (Courtesy of Betfair)

17/20 Liverpool

13/5 Draw

13/5 Man Utd

Liverpool squad

Karius, Grabara, Kelleher, Van Dijk, Gomez, Klavan, Phillips, Robertson, Moreno, Fabinho, Wijnaldum, Milner, Lallana, Grujic, Woodburn, Jones, Chirivella, Salah, Mane, Shaqiri, Sturridge, Solanke, Origi, Ojo, Markovic, Camacho

Manchester United squad

Romero, Pereira, Grant, Valencia, Darmian, Dalot, Fosu-Mensah, Williams, Smalling, Bailly, Tuanzebe, Mitchell, Shaw, Garner, Herrera, Pereira, McTominay, Hamilton, Alexis, Chong, Gomes, Mata, Martial, Greenwood, Bohui

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Jurgen Klopp responds to Jose Mourinho’s mind games ahead of Manchester United friendly

The German coach has played down the significance of Liverpool’s massive spending (Picture: Getty)Jurgen Klopp has responded to Manchester United rival Jose Mourinho’s suggestion that Liverpool’s enormous £176million outlay this summer means they must deliver silverware.

The Merseysiders signed Naby Keta, Fabinho, Xherdan Shaqiri and Alisson – who is now the most expensive goalkeeper ever – despite Klopp having previously claimed he prefers to coach players rather than buy them.

Klopp had also criticised United’s purchase of Paul Pogba for a then record fee two years ago, and Mourinho remarked this week that his counterpart’s change in approach was ‘funny’.

Jose Mourinho challenges Liverpool to win trophies

‘That’s okay, but maybe this season finally you demand that they win. I think you have to be fair and now you have to demand [they win the league]. You have to say the team, with the investments not just this season, last season, that you made in January, that you make now, because that will probably be the record for the Premier League this season, I can’t see anyone else getting close to spending what they have. A team that was a finalist in the Champions League, you have to say you are a big candidate, you have to win.’

Mourinho, who faces off against Liverpool in Michigan on Saturday, also said Liverpool now ‘have to win’ titles next season, but Klopp insists he will not let the United boss put pressure on him.

Asked if Mourinho was trying to play mind games, Klopp told Sky Sports: ‘Yeah, for sure, a little bit but that’s okay.

‘But I heard as well that Jose found me funny and one of my biggest goals in life is to make Jose smile! It doesn’t happen too often and if it happens because of Liverpool – well done!

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‘I said a few things [in the past]. I cannot really remember what I said but I know what I said about the Pogba transfer.

‘I would never talk about Manchester United unless somebody asks me about it but I am polite enough to give an answer if somebody asks me.

Klopp said he’d quit football is fees like Pogba’s £89m move became the norm (Getty)‘That’s not always the smartest thing to do, and I have absolutely no problem with what Jose Mourinho is saying. It is a free world and he can say whatever he wants.

‘If he is happy about our transfers even better, but we know that it does not mean you win automatically whatever.

‘Man United has a strong team and they will strengthen that in the next two weeks. They are already strong, the same as Man City and Tottenham.

Liverpool spent £66.8m on Alisson, breaking the previous record (Picture: Getty)‘Arsenal and Chelsea have new managers but they will be strong – plus a few others – so it’s our job to improve our own situation. That’s what we try to do but that has to happen on the pitch, not in the transfer market.

‘We want to deliver constantly. We want to improve that’s what we want to show and we will see where that leads us to.

‘Improvement means playing better football, being more consistent and entertaining the crowd in a very specific way – We are Liverpool and we stand for football. All I can say is that we will try everything we can to be as successful as possible and in the end we will see.’

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Jose Mourinho fires warning to Jurgen Klopp over Liverpool’s new signings

Jose Mourinho believes Liverpool must win the title this season. (Getty Images)Jose Mourinho has warned Jurgen Klopp that he will be under pressure to win the Premier League title following Liverpool’s summer spending spree.

Liverpool have spent close to £170 million ahead of the new campaign with the signings of Alisson, Fabinho, Xherdan Shaqiri and Naby Keita.

And the United manager also aimed a light-hearted dig at Klopp after the Liverpool manager criticised Mourinho’s decision to spend £89 million on Paul Pogba two years ago.

When asked about Liverpool’s significant outlay on players this summer, Mourinho replied: ‘I think if you have the money, if you invest well, it is better than to have it in the bank.

‘Because the interest rates are very low.

Jurgen Klopp had criticised United’s £89m outlay on Pogba. (Getty Images)More: Football

‘The problem is you have to invest well and honestly I think they did very well, because every player they bought are quality players. I’m happy for them.

‘And I’m also happy to smile [at Klopp’s previous comments about United’s spending] and to see that, you know, you can change your opinion and change as a person, it’s funny.

WHAT KLOPP SAID ABOUT POGBA’S £89M TRANSFER

‘Other clubs can go out and spend money and collect top players. I want to do it differently. I would even do it differently if I could spend that money.’

‘That’s OK, but maybe this season finally you demand that they win.

‘I think you have to be fair and now you have to demand [they win the title].

‘You have to say the team, with the investments you are making last season, that you made in January, that you make now, because that will probably be the record for the Premier League this season, I can’t see anyone else getting close to spending what they have.

‘A team that was a finalist in the Champions League, you have to say you are a big candidate, you have to win [the league].’

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Jose Mourinho claims Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal have a major advantage over Manchester United

Jose Mourinho believes Manchester United will start the season at a disadvantage. (AMA/Getty Images)Jose Mourinho claims Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal have a major advantage over Manchester United due to the players they have available during pre-season.

Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku, Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Marouane Fellaini, Ashley Young and Phil Jones will miss the majority of United’s pre-season campaign as they are still on holiday after the World Cup.

Mourinho has already said that none of those players who featured in the latter stages of the tournament in Russia will be in the right condition for United’s opening Premier League game against Leicester City on August 10.

And the United manager believes the players that Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal already have available gives them an advantage for the start of the new season.

Asked if he believes his rivals are in a similar position to United, Mourinho replied: ‘If you look at the players Chelsea and Liverpool have in pre-season, especially these two teams, also Arsenal, I think if you compare you see the difference of the situation.

Mourinho is keen for United to sign more players. (Getty Images)More: Football

‘Man City and Tottenham in similar situation as we are.

‘But you can see other clubs are in a different situation.

‘I look to Leicester, if I’m not wrong, only [Harry] Maguire and [Jamie] Vardy were in the World Cup in the final phase, because [Kasper] Schmeichel was back sooner.

‘So I think a team working for six weeks minimum with all the players, except one central defender and one striker that can join in the last weekend and probably be available. Is clear it’s a much better situation for them.

‘When I look to Brighton, I don’t think they have any player that isn’t doing a very good pre-season with lots of training and matches.

Mourinho has called up several academy players for United’s pre-season tour of the United States. (Getty Images)‘So against Leicester and Brighton the situation is not amazing for us.

‘I would say third match, playing against a team [Tottenham] in a similar situation as us, after three weeks is okay, is almost like you need a pre-season with them but for the first two matches we have to fight for the points.

‘So that is what we are going to do with the players available.’

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Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho tells friends he’s keen on Xherdan Shaqiri

Jose Mourinho is interested in signing Xherdan Shaqiri (Picture: Getty)Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is reportedly weighing up a move for Stoke City star Xherdan Shaqiri.

Shaqiri has scored 15 goals in 92 appearances for Stoke since joining the club back in 2015 but the 26-year-old winger will leave the Potters after they were relegated from the Premier League.

Reports suggest Liverpool have held talks with Shaqiri over a £12million move to Anfield but it’s understood the Reds will have competition from bitter rivals United this summer.

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According to The Sun, Mourinho was keeping an eye on Shaqiri’s displays at the World Cup before Switzerland were eliminated at the hands of Sweden in their last-16 clash.

It’s claimed Mourinho has even told close friends that he’s keen on the former Bayern Munich man.

Jose Mourinho has told his friends that he likes the Swiss midfielder (Picture: Getty)Shaqiri confirmed earlier this week that he will leave Stoke this summer, but stressed that he plans on remaining in England.

‘I want to stay in the Premier League and you will find out my new club soon,’ the Switzerland international said.

Amid speculation linking him with Liverpool, Shaqiri admitted that the chance to play at Anfield was appealing.

Asked what he thought of Liverpool’s iconic stadium last month, Shaqiri chuckled before replying: ‘The Anfield stadium is great certainly.

‘But why are you talking about Liverpool?’

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Shaqiri is tied into a deal at the bet365 Stadium until the summer of 2020.