Nemanja Matic admits he wanted to make Man United boss Jose Mourinho angry
Nemanja Matic replies to Jose Mourinho's remarks about Serbia at the World Cup
Nemanja Matic has admitted that he tried to make Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho “angry” by aiming to take Serbia through to the knockout stages of the World Cup.
Matic featured for Serbia in Russia but was unable to help to steer his country through to the last 16, as they ended up crashing out in the group stage.
Serbia beat Costa Rica in their opening game but then suffered defeats by Switzerland and Brazil as their hopes of reaching the knockout phase were ended.
Before the tournament had started, Manchester United boss Mourinho had joked that he wanted Serbia to get knocked out early because Matic “needs a holiday”.
And the midfielder has now responded to his manager’s remarks in the wake of Serbia’s exit from the tournament.
Matic is quoted as saying by Metro: “I saw that Mourinho said that he wanted me to go home early.
“I tried to make him angry! I tried to get Serbia to the group stages, but unfortunately we are out of the World Cup.
“Of course, he wants his players to be fresh for a good pre-season because, as you know, English football is very hard.
“We have a long championship, we have the Champions League, we have two cup competitions so I understand it, but I gave everything to get us through the group stage.”
Matic will be hoping to help Manchester United to challenge for the Premier League title next season after the Red Devils ended up in second place in the table last season.
The Red Devils have not won the title since 2013 and they ended last term without a trophy.
However, they did win both the Europa League and League Cup in Mourinho’s first campaign in charge at Old Trafford.