Usain Bolt claims Jose Mourinho’s brand of football was “never going to work” at Manchester United following Sir Alex Ferguson’s reign of attacking football at Old Trafford.
The 32-year-old Olympic champion is a devoted Red Devils fan and remains upbeat about his team despite several years of turmoil.
Speaking during a Soccer Aid training session at Stamford Bridge, Bolt was positive about United’s chances for the 2019/20 season. “Mourinho didn’t play our style of football, and that’s why it didn’t work out,” he said. “Watching Manchester United from the Fergie days we were always an attacking team, no matter what.
“No matter if we didn’t put a good side out they were always attacking, so to become a defensive team, it was never going to work.
“For me, I wouldn’t say I’m happy he left, but I’m happy with the style of football we play now.”
Bolt believes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs reinforcements during the summer transfer window, but that his current squad will be desperate to work for the team. “I think the players will play for [Solskjaer], and that’s a good thing. As a manager you want the players to play for you, and the guys he has really want to do well.
“If we bring in a few more players, we should be alright. We’ve just signed Daniel James. He’s quick, but we’ve just got to watch and see how the season turns out. It’s only June so let’s see what happens next.”
The Jamaican sprinting sensation attempted to get into the world of professional football after signing for Australian A-League team Central Coast Mariners in 2018. He spent two months with the side before leaving the club in November and he won’t be looking around for a new team any time soon.
“No, no, I think my time has passed. I’m getting older, I’m turning 33 in August so I’m going to focus on other things right now. Even if I play well on Sunday. It’s something that I still wish I’d got the right chance to really play, but it is what it is.
“I’m still the fastest man in the world – that works.”
But while he remains the undisputed fastest sprinter in history – with the 100m, 200m and 4 x 100m world records safely in his care – Bolt remarkably wasn’t logged as the fastest man at the Soccer Aid training session. Instead that honour went to Danny Jones…
“I feel great knowing I’m the fastest man on the pitch,” said the McFly singer, to which Bolt replied: “He got lucky, he got lucky. I didn’t know it was a competition.”
Jones added: “I’ve just logged in my data and I’m the fastest player so I said we’re going to have to re-film it.
“He’s letting me have it for the day though.”
But by his very nature, Bolt was quick to reassure fans he isn’t slowing down: “Tomorrow’s going to be different. I’m going to step the pace up a bit.
“Today when they gave us the monitors, I just needed to run some long distances, I was just trying to get my heart rate up but I didn’t know they were going to make it a competition so I was chilling today. He won and I was like “NO!”
To find out whether Bolt can outpace the McFly star, Soccer Aid for Unicef will be broadcast live on ITV on Sunday 16th June, starting at 6.30pm.
To donate to Unicef, visit socceraid.org.uk