Jose Mourinho insisted the 3-1 derby defeat to Manchester City will not change his mind that Manchester United are getting better.
However, the Portuguese coach said afterwards they had not delivered a “bad” performance and insisted United are improving.
“We are not going to be affected by this,” Mourinho told a news conference.
“I am just sorry we don’t play the next match soon and have to wait 13 days for that, but we are improving, we are together and go together until the end.”
Mourinho was forced to leave out Paul Pogba after the Frenchman suffered an injury during the midweek victory over Juventus.
Marouane Fellaini was drafted in to take his place and Mourinho believes the result might have been different had the Belgian been available from the bench with the score at 2-1 before Ilkay Gundogan wrapped up the points with City’s late third goal.
“I can just imagine when the result was 2-1 to bring a fresh Fellaini to the pitch,” said Mourinho.
“I think they would be in big, big trouble. But when the result was 2-1 and we had that final push, Fellaini was doing an incredible effort to stay on the pitch, not fresh at all, risking his injury and condition and to give everything for the team.
“For different reasons we missed Paul but that doesn’t mean with Paul we win the game so it is not an excuse.”
United have now conceded 21 goals in their first 12 league games for the first time since 1966 and are the only team in the top half of the table with a negative goal difference.
Mourinho made signing a new centre-back a priority in the summer but couldn’t get one over the line before the deadline.
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