Greater Manchester police deny Jose Mourinho's claims they were to blame for squad's late arrival at Old Trafford 2 years ago

Greater Manchester police deny Jose Mourinho's claims they were to blame for squad's late arrival at Old Trafford

That's a new target for Jose Mourinho's notorious blame game.

In the past, we've seen Jose Mourinho single out referees, the media and his own players for blame for under performance, but Tuesday night was a first as the Manchester United vented his frustration about Greater Manchester Police.

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Mourinho and his Manchester United squad were left to travel to Old Trafford without a police escort for Tuesday night's Champions League clash at Old Trafford, causing a slight delay to kick-off.

Uefa agreed to allow the match against Valencia to kick off late after the hosts arrived at 7.15pm, having left the team hotel - which is less than three miles away from Old Trafford - at 6pm.

"We left the hotel at six o'clock, hoping that 30 minutes would be enough," Mourinho said.

"Which normally is but this time the police refused to do an escort so we come by ourselves. And we took from the Lowry Hotel, 75 minutes.

"And Uefa were nice, the referee was nice to allow us to start the game five minutes later because we at least need half an hour to be prepared but was not a problem with the club organisation.

"We anticipate everything that it could be dangerous, in the sense of arriving late but we were informed the police refused an escort."

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United played out a 0-0 draw with the La Liga side in their second group game, meaning the Red Devils are without a win in their last four matches.

And on Wednesday morning, Greater Manchester Police released a statement to MEN on their decision not to provide United with an escort to the stadium.

The statement read: "All police deployments are carried out following a comprehensive risk assessment process and specifically in respect of escort team buses, are only ever undertaken on occasions when there is intelligence or information to suggest a risk of threat or harm to the players.

"GMP has previously used police vehicles to accompany a team’s coach but after a review of our core policing responsibilities it was decided that we would no longer provide this service at every fixture.

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"We consulted with the relevant football clubs over a period of months to allow them adequate time to plan ahead for their journeys to the stadium.

"Every fixture is assessed individually and we will continue to work with all clubs to provide an appropriate policing response."