Pep Guardiola placed Paul Pogba at the heart of the build up to Saturday’s derby but the Manchester United midfielder had the last laugh.
Jose Mourinho implied Pep Guardiola make a mistake by discussing Paul Pogba before the France midfielder inspired Manchester United’s stunning 3-2 derby comeback win over Premier League champions-elect Manchester City.
Two goals in the space of 97 seconds early in the second half brought United level after Vincent Kompany and Ilkay Gundogan gave City a commanding 2-0 lead at the interval.
The damage would have been greater had Raheem Sterling not spurned a pair of glorious chances but City’s wastefulness came back to haunt them as Chris Smalling volleyed a 69th-minute winner.
Guardiola sensationally claimed Pogba’ outspoken agent Mino Raiola touted his client for a move across town in January – a prospect that seemed fanciful as the 25-year-old led boisterous on-field celebrations for United on Saturday.
“I often make mistakes,” Mourinho pointedly told reporters when asked whether Guardiola had erred by recounting the episode in a remarkable pre-match news conference.
“It’s no problem. I don’t even think about it.
“It is normal that sometimes they come with a little touch on each other but I was not worried about it, I was not upset with it and I didn’t speak with Paul about it.
“I didn’t call Mino to ask him anything at all, I was just focused on the game and I think Paul was the same because the way he played was only possible if he was focused on the game.”