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Jose Mourinho admits United are “in trouble” as the new season looms

Jose Mourinho has admitted Manchester United will “be in trouble” for the beginning of the new season after being thrashed by Liverpool 4-1 in pre-season.

United were dismantled by Jurgen Klopp’s side in Ann Arbor yesterday afternoon, with goals from Sadio Mane, Daniel Sturridge, Sheyi Ojo and Xherdan Shaqiri sealing a comprehensive win for the Merseysiders.

Mourinho was without a number of key players for the clash, with a host of the club’s stars ruled out because of extended holiday after the World Cup.

And the Portuguese manager says such absences in pre-season will prove to be costly come the start of the season, and that he hopes those currently away from the squad can return as soon as possible.

“I just hope the boys on deserved holidays, they take care of themselves a little bit and I hope somebody wants to do what [Marcus] Rashford and [Phil] Jones decide to do, which is to be back a little bit earlier to try and help the team because for the beginning of the season we are going to be in trouble.”

United have also struggled with injuries, as well as players ruled out for personal reasons.

Antonio Valencia was ruled out of yesterday’s clash having picked up an injury versus San Jose Earthquakes last week, while Anthony Martial remains an absentee due to the birth of his son.

However Mourinho was ruthless in his assessment of the duo’s circumstances, hinting the pair are partly to blame for the club’s woeful pre-season form.

“We play Real Madrid and we have no more players than what we have,” he told MUTV. “Antonio Valencia comes from holiday – I think too much holiday for him. His condition was not good when he was back, then injury and also go back.

“Anthony Martial has the baby and after the baby is born – beautiful baby, full of health, thank God – he should be here and he is not here.

“So we have Alexis [Sanchez] and [Juan] Mata who play every minute of every match and now we have Real Madrid and after that Bayern Munich and that’s our start.”