Former United winger Jules Maiorana believes that Jose Mourinho has a more difficult job than many perceived and that Wayne Rooney’s days of being a first choice starter for the club are coming to an end.
Speaking at the end of a difficult week for United, Jules, who made eight appearances in the first team in 1989 believes the team need to start games quicker: “At the beginning of the season with Mourinho coming in I thought United on paper had a better team than City which obviously hasn’t been the case. United have been poor, against Watford if they had been playing a better team they’d have lost it by half-time.
“They lost the game in the first half against City as well, if you go one of two goals down in the first half against a decent team then 95% of the time you’ve lost the game. Mourinho has got a bigger job on his hands than what I initially thought.”
Jules is also critical of Wayne Rooney who has had a largely unimpressive start to the season as the debate about his best position rumbles on: “Personally, I’ve never thought that Rooney is world-class, he does a good job for the team. He’s had a bad three or four seasons for United and for England it goes further back than that.
“If he’s that good, why is he playing in so many different positions, if you’re the captain and you do an exceptional job in one position surely you’ll play there week in week out. At the minute he’s playing on the left, the right or in the middle and no one seems to know his best position.
“I reckon it’s time to pack him off to the MLS or even just bench him and bring him on as an impact sub. His passing is sloppy and he had a bad game against Watford, even when he drops behind the front two he tries to be like Iniesta and he’s not on the same level.”
Matteo Darmian enjoyed a good start to his time at the club but has struggled in recent months and has featured only once this season. Jules is perplexed at his fellow Italian’s struggles after initially deeming his signing to be a great piece of business: “I think him coming over to play in the Premier League has ruined him, I watched him play in Italy and when United signed him for a relatively low figure by today’s standards I thought it was a great buy.
“I saw him play at Fulham for Italy against Nigeria and I’d never heard of him before but he looked a very good player so I don’t know what’s happened to him. That night he was getting up and down and knocking crosses in, I don’t know whether it’s confidence but he just doesn’t look the same player.”
Asked whether United will make the top four this season Jules says: “It’s early doors, but I’d say yes. Although I did the say the same thing last year under Van Gaal but Mourinho doesn’t take any messing around and he’s done it time and time again.”