Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho says Premier League champions Manchester City will be hard to catch if they maintain this season’s standards in the future.
Mourinho is adamant that his team’s current campaign should not be considered a failure – even if they finish without a trophy.
The Portuguese has rarely ended a season without silverware during his hugely successful career but will be empty handed if United do not lift the FA Cup.
However, ahead of Saturday’s semi-final against Tottenham at Wembley , Mourinho said: “Can you say the three teams that are not going to win the FA Cup are going to fail? I think it’s too harsh.
“Praise the winner and we’re going to try to be the ones.”
“Many clubs had positive seasons, like us, like Tottenham, like Liverpool,” he said.
“But it was impossible, because City were really good and consistent and will reach a number of points that makes it impossible.
“Give no chance to the opponent, that’s what Manchester City did.
“If they do the same number of points in 2018-19, if they get into the 90-something points, it will be almost impossible again.
“I was champion in Spain with 100 points and Barcelona had 91 points. 91 points was a failure for Barcelona?
“I don’t think it was, but the other guys did 100 points.
“I was champions with Chelsea with 95 points.
“We gave no chance to the opponents, which is what Manchester City did.
“We had periods of winning matches and waiting for them to lose a couple of points. They never did it.”
Mourinho now faces the prospect of trying to beat Spurs at Wembley, which has been the London club’s temporary home this season while White Hart Lane has been rebuilt.
Mourinho does not think United will be at a disadvantage and pointed to his Inter Milan side’s 2010 Coppa Italia triumph against Roma at their opponents’ Stadio Olimpico home, and also his Real Madrid side’s 2013 loss at their Bernabeu home to Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey final.
Mourinho, who is seeking a fourth FA Cup triumph after three wins with Chelsea, said: “I don’t think it’s an advantage at all.
“I played one cup final in Roma’s stadium against Roma and I won. I played a cup final in my stadium and I lost.
“So I think, when you go to this big moments with these big semi-finals, finals, I don’t think it’s an advantage.”