Jose Mourinho harshly criticises Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial following Brighton loss 3 weeks ago

Jose Mourinho harshly criticises Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial following Brighton loss

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has highlighted Marcus Rashford's and Anthony Martial's inconsistent displays as justification for their wider support roles at the club following United's 1-0 loss to Brighton on Friday night.

A second-half goal from German midfielder Pascal Groß was ultimately the difference between the two sides at Falmer Stadium as Brighton secured their Premier League survival with the win.

Meanwhile United blew a chance to move one step closer to sealing second place and automatic qualification for next season's Champions League with the defeat.

Mourinho's side boasted more possession and had more shots than Brighton during the match but they could not convert in the absence of injured forwards Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez.

Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Juan Mata started in a new look front three and Mourinho indicated that their performance against Brighton is why Lukaku is the first choice striker at the club.

“It was not good enough,” said Mourinho.

“The players who replaced others did not perform at a good level and, when individuals do that, it is difficult for the team to play well.

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“Maybe now you will not ask me why A, B and C do not play so much. People always ask: ‘Why always Lukaku?’ Well, now they know why always Lukaku, and why always this player and why always that player. We are probably not as good as people think we are individually.

“I knew what was going to happen, and I told them, but that is what we got. Brighton had one target, to get the point and celebrate their Premier League survival.

"Our target was to get points to help us finish second and they clearly showed that, for them, it is more important for them to stay in the Premier League than for us to finish second. They showed it from the first minute and we didn’t show that. We were not able to motivate ourselves.”

Mourinho is hopeful that Lukaku and Sanchez will both return for the club's FA Cup final with Chelsea later this month.