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EFL Cup Final: Jose Mourinho applauds a beautiful final

Jose Mourinho lifts the EFL Cup

Jose Mourinho lifts the EFL Cup

PUBLISHED

21:23 26th February 2017

by Alex Hannah

Jose Mourinho has turned his attention to securing more silverware after his Manchester United side lifted the EFL Cup.

The Portuguese boss watched the Red Devils beat Southampton 3-2 thanks to a Zlatan Ibrahimovic double and a Jesse Lingard goal, in a thrilling affair at Wembley.

It was a match full of landmarks — Lingard scored in yet another Wembley final and Ibrahimovic added to his tally of goals in big games — but arguably the biggest was the one achieved by the Manchester United manager.

Victory at Wembley sees the Mourinho join two managerial greats of the English game on four League Cup titles as a manager.

“I’m happy to make it my fourth,” he explained. “The same as Sir Alex Ferguson and Brian Clough. The chance to make it five makes me happy, too.

“This win is important for the fans, the club, and the players. I am secondary to those three.

"I put a lot of pressure on myself, I want to win major trophies with every club I manage, so to do that with Manchester United is a big relief. A trophy was my target and we want more."

The five-goal thriller was enjoyed by more than 85,000 people inside Wembley, and the United boss was impressed by Southampton’s performance, and full of praise for the spectacle they helped to produce.

Goals either side of the break from Manola Gabbiadini brought the Saints right back into the match and with them in the ascendancy for a long period after, United were made to work hard for their victory.

“Claude Puel [Southampton manager] has reason to be disappointed,” Mourinho continued, “It’s an unfair loss to them.

"Southampton players and fans helped to produce a beautiful final for the neutral. Gabbiadini’s second goal was phenomenal, a technically brilliant goal.”

On the subject of strikers, Mourinho had nothing but praise for his own talisman.

Ibrahimovic, 35, produced the goods on the biggest stage once again, yet Mourinho was left answering questions on whether he has hopes his striker will be in Manchester for the foreseeable future.

“I was his manager before so I knew his potential,” he replied. “Only a silly player comes to England at 35 after the success that he’s had. He’d have to be silly to come if he couldn’t do it.

“But he knew he could do it, he decided to take the challenge, he came to Manchester united and he felt ready, and that’s the most important thing.

“I never beg players to stay with me. Zlatan left me before and of course I was sad, but I did not beg him to stay.

“United fans can go to his house and stay there all night if needed. We will believe he will stay with us one more season.”

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