Jose Mourinho: Man Utd punished by Craig Pawson's bad decision
By Gerard Brand
Last Updated: 31/12/17 12:35pm
Jose Mourinho complained that referee Craig Pawson's "bad" decision not to award Manchester United a penalty against Southampton "punished" his side.
During the 0-0 at Old Trafford, which left United in third place in the Premier League, Maya Yoshida seemingly handled in the penalty area, only for Pawson to deem it unintentional.
Mourinho's side failed to break down a Saints side who have won only once in 12 games, but the United boss complained that Pawson, along with other referees from recent games, punished the hosts.
Asked about Pawson's decision, Mourinho said: "A very good referee, one of the most promising young referees not just in England, but in Europe too, had a very bad decision that punished us.
"Then, the game was about us trying, missing some important chances, and always trying to create, always trying to play. I think we deserved to win the match.
"I know my players so when I see people like (Juan) Mata almost in hysterics I know, I could understand immediately there is no doubt. And then at half-time I watch it. It is a penalty like (Marcus) Rashford against Leicester was a penalty, like (Ander) Herrera against City was a penalty.
"[Pawson] is unlucky, and I repeat without any problem, that the three referee's performances in these matches - (Michael) Oliver against City, (Jon) Moss against Leicester, and Craig tonight - were good referees, good performances. Unlucky decisions for us, which obviously punished us."
Mourinho's side are now without a win in four games in all competitions, and could fall 17 points behind rivals Man City if they beat Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Sunday.
The United manager added that he felt his side did enough to beat Southampton, despite the visitors' having several opportunities of their own, and bemoaned the early loss of striker Romelu Lukaku to a head injury, saying he did not wish to play Marcus Rashford for an entire game.
"I think we played enough to win. With all the difficulties, we played enough to win. We started the game and we lose the striker, and we lose one of the only two changes I have on the bench, to change in terms of attacking areas, which leaves me just with one change for the rest of the 90 minutes.
"I had to bring Rashford to the game for 90 minutes when he clearly needs a bit of rest which I couldn't give him."
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