Having been Cristiano Ronaldo’s coach the last time he played at Old Trafford, Jose Mourinho knows the forward’s threat to his side.
Jose Mourinho expects Cristiano Ronaldo to be determined to score against Manchester United, despite his love for his old club.
Ronaldo will face his former side at Old Trafford for the first time in five years on Tuesday when Juventus visit for the Champions League Group H clash.
The Portugal star’s last appearance against United at their home was in the knockout phase of the 2012-13 tournament when he scored what proved to be the winning goal in a 3-2 aggregate victory for Real Madrid.
And Mourinho, who was Madrid head coach at the time, fully expects his compatriot to want to strike against his former employers again.
“He came back with me in Real Madrid. It was a knockout match and I know how much he loves Manchester United. I know that, but I also know how much he wanted to win here and score against Manchester United and win against Manchester United,” Mourinho told United’s website.
“He scored, and they won. So, [on Tuesday], more of the same. The fans will show the respect he deserves. He will show that to the fans too. I know that he really loves the club but when the ball starts rolling, he wants to score, and he wants to win.”
This is why we #UCL nights at Old Trafford!
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 22, 2018
Mourinho, though, says he has been relishing the prospect of such a daunting double-header, even if he thinks Juve are a step ahead of United at present.
“You cannot be in the Champions League and expect not to play and not to enjoy these opponents,” he said. “I think they are always a candidate [to win] and, this season, they are more than a candidate. So, it’s fantastic for us.
“I said before the Chelsea game that Chelsea-Juventus in three days, for some, is a nightmare. For me, it’s not a nightmare, it’s just where I want to be, and I thought I was quite successful in giving this feeling to the boys before the Chelsea match. I think it’s easier now to give the same feeling for this match and we have to enjoy it. Nobody can kill our desire to play that game and try to win.
“In this moment, Juventus are with different footballistic power but, as I’m saying, nobody can stop us going into the game and to think we can win.”