Koeman: Despite Signing Rooney, Lukaku Is Still Impossible To Replace At Everton


For most of the summer, it did look like the 24-year-old would be heading back to his first English club, Chelsea, while United's interest was seemingly in Alvaro Morata.

"I don't think it was my influence, no", he told the Telegraph.

The United manager is insistent that his team's success or failure will not depend exclusively on the form of their main striker, pointing out that they only finished sixth in the Premier League last season despite the contribution of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who scored 28 goals in all competitions. "I don't really understand it". "I think this Premier League is much more defensive-minded, and much more hard". For sure I would have kept some of the players that were sold, for sure I would not buy some of the players that were bought.

"In the second season, you have your influence at that level". Not just because we are playing in the Champions League, which is the competition for Manchester United, but because in the Premier League we managed a good start which put us initially in the top positions in the table. "You have better conditions to work and get those results", Mourinho continued.

However, the retired England striker has since been dogged by an off-field controversy, while Everton have lost 3-0 in their last two games in the Premier League and the Europa League. Signings Romelu Lukaku and Victor Lindelöf were early deals, allowing the pair a full pre-season.

Meanwhile, the pre-season itself was smooth and well-organised, unlike 2016's farce where United traveled to China to play one game after a fixture against Manchester City was cancelled due to a waterlogged pitch.