Press Conference: Manchester United vs. Benfica


Jose Mourinho wants his side to wrap up qualification to the Round of 16 in tomorrow night’s Champions League clash against Benfica.

Having won three out of three to top Group A to date, a win against the Portuguese Champions at Old Trafford would seal a berth in February’s knockout phase.

Fellow Portuguese boss Mourinho is hoping his team can do just that when they welcome Benfica just 13 days after the reverse fixture.

“Our aim tomorrow is to qualify,” quoted Mourinho at today’s press conference.

“Ten points would be okay, but our main aim is to qualify first in the group.”

Whilst acknowledging the tricky nature of Tuesday’s clash, Mourinho, as throughout his managerial career, is aiming for the number one spot in the round robin.

“Benfica will give us a difficult match.

“They will have their own ambition and pride and they will try to win, we just want to get to the last 16 by finishing first in the group.”

The injury situation remains the same, but Mourinho stated that Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial are capable of playing together in the same side after largely rotating roles in the campaign to date.

“We have the same players as the weekend,” admitted Jose.

“We played Marcus and Anthony together in Swansea, so yes, they can play together, that’s no problem.”

Mourinho hailed the importance of fellow striker Romelu Lukaku who has made a fine start to his United career despite going four games without a goal.

He did score, however, in the opening group fixture against FC Basel at Old Trafford and will be looking for a repeat on Halloween.

“What he does for the team is fantastic and to play football for a striker is not just about scoring goals.

“For me, he is untouchable in my team and I think he should be untouchable in the support and the respect he deserves from the fans.”

The Belgian will be aiming to add to his in three in three in this season’s competition with a 7:45pm kick-off set to commence matchday four of the Champions League group stage.

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