A View From The Enemy: Burnley fan on Mourinho, Lingard and the Europa League

Manchester United are one win from three to start the 2018/19 campaign; their worst beginning to a season in recent memory…

Things can only get better, or so the old saying would have us believe. This weekend’s trip to Burnley will be by no means easy. Before the encounter at Turf Moor, we caught up with Tony Scholes, from the brilliant Burnley site, Up The Clarets.

Jordan@ Old Trafford Faithful: First of all, tell us a bit about yourself and the site:

Tony Scholes @ Up The Clarets: I’m Tony Scholes and have been supporting Burnley for almost 58 years. My first ever game was against Manchester United which, I am pleased to say, we won 5-3. That was in October 1960. I was hooked from that day I think, and have supported the club ever since, through the slide down the divisions almost into closure and then, much more enjoyably, all the way back to the top flight again.

Up the Clarets was launched in January 2016 but prior to that I’ve been involved with other Burnley websites since 1999. I’m told it keeps me out of mischief.

Jordan@OTF: Yeah, it’s fair to say I don’t remember that one back in 1960! Anyway, onto recent day activity. Thoughts on the Europa League campaign ending early?

Tony@UTC: Less than 48 since we were knocked out, I’m still really disappointed. It was a big ask for us playing in six consecutive weeks. I’m not sure but I bet not too many teams have got through that having to juggle a league season at the same time. I would have loved to have stayed in the competition and would have loved to have made some more journeys into Europe; I did at least manage to get to the away games at Aberdeen and Olympiacos.

I’ve never been one to think that one competition gets in the way of another but a lot of experts seem to think Europa League football does adversely affect a team in the Premier League.

Jordan@OTF: I liked our Europa League campaign a few years ago, it’s a fun tournament. Onto Sean Dyche, how far can he take Burnley?

Tony@UTC: I think it is more how far he has taken us. He took over a side that was shipping goals for fun. He sorted us out defensively, although you wouldn’t think so looking at last week’s results, and then took us to two promotions and more significantly now a third consecutive season in the Premier League.

For a club our size that is some achievement. How much further can he take us? It might be difficult in terms of league position but his management has allowed the club to progress so much in other areas and I’m sure that will continue over the rest of his time at Burnley.

Jordan@OTF: He’s a fantastic manager. Onto our gaffer, Jose Mourinho. Care to voice an opinion?

Tony@UTC: I didn’t like him up to February 2015 but my feelings for him deteriorated after his appalling behaviour after we’d drawn at Chelsea in February 2015.

His shocking attack on one of our players; his subsequent behaviour on Goals on Sunday when he actually demanded that Sky drop the other guests, was absolutely appalling. I was delighted when Chelsea sacked him, hopeful that we’d never see him work in this country again. Hopefully, that time will come very soon…

Jordan@OTF: I already think I know the answer to this one then! Dyche or Mourinho?

Tony@UTC: There’s only one Sean Dyche. He’s a decent man, he’s respectful, he never publicly attacks anyone, it’s never all about him. He’s a decent person.

Jordan@OTF: If you can take one United player to Burnley, who do you go for and why?

Tony@UTC: This is a good question. It’s not too long ago we’d have snatched off United’s hand for any player but maybe not just the case now although we did benefit from signing Michael Keane four years ago and I do think Jimmy Dunne, the young Irish defender who moved from Old Trafford to Turf Moor two years ago, could prove to be a very good signing.

As for your current first team squad, I’d probably say Jesse Lingard, simply because he wouldn’t then have scored the two goals that cost us a win at Old Trafford last Boxing Day.

Jordan@OTF: If you could recommend one Burnley player for United to sign, who do you choose?

Tony@UTC: I think our defenders are better than yours so perhaps either James Tarkowski or Ben Mee would improve the United side. We’d have to put the price up a bit first though!

Jordan@OTF: Finally, a score prediction:

Tony@UTC: It will be a tight game I think, they all have been in the Premier League between the two teams at Turf Moor. Hopefully, we’ll sneak another 1-0 win as we did in 2009 although I suspect if we do the goal won’t be quite as spectacular!

Jordan@OTF: Thanks, Tony! I’ll go for 2-0 United. Enjoy the game!

You can check out Up The Clarets’ website here, or follow them on Twitter @utcdotcom.

About Jordan Street 16056 Articles
Mancunian. Red through and through. Season Ticket holder block E332.

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