Paul Ince sends blunt Man United warning to Jose Mourinho about top four

The former Manchester United captain says the Red Devils simply have to qualify for the Champions League

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho Photo: Hublot

Paul Ince has bluntly warned Jose Mourinho that Manchester United have to find a way to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

The Red Devils have dropped points in the Premier League in recent weeks following successive 1-1 stalemates with Bournemouth and Everton at Old Trafford, before their 3-0 win at Sunderland last time out.

Manchester United are in fifth place in the table and four points behind their derby rivals Manchester City, who occupy the final Champions League qualifying spot.

Mourinho is thought to have prioritised winning the Europa League for the first time which would earn Manchester United a spot at Europe’s top table next term.

However, the Red Devils were unable to capitalise on a dominant performance in Belgium after Anderlecht cancelled out Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s opener with an 86th-minute equaliser in the first leg of their last-eight clash.

Writing in his Paddy Power column ahead of Manchester United’s home clash against Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon, Ince informed Mourinho that the Red Devils can ill-afford to miss out on Champions League football for another season.

“Jose Mourinho will want to avenge his two losses to his former club this season,” Ince said.

“The Red Devils have to get into the Champions League by hook or by crook because if they don’t they won’t be able to attract the very best players next season.

“They need more quality because Manchester United have been far too over-reliant on Zlatan Ibrahimovic this campaign.”

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