Manchester United suffered a 3-0 loss to Tottenham at home on Monday, their second defeat of the season, and one that comes right at the back of a 3-2 loss to Brighton last week.
Much of the power structure at Old Trafford has been placed under scrutiny by supporters as of recent, with Ed Woodward, in particular, being showered with much doubt after having failed to provide Jose Mourinho with the defensive reinforcements he required during the transfer window.
However, what was yet to be seen was how supporters would respond to Mourinho after the defeat, with entire stadiums having proven to be an intimidating opposition in the past, and boos having a tendency to linger for long.
Fortunately for Mourinho, no such thing occurred at Old Trafford. In fact, loyal Red Devils from Stretford End were chanting his name after the full-time whistle was blown. Despite the negative result, the home fans were a strong and largely positive presence throughout the game.
Mourinho clearly understands and appreciates the importance of having the fans on his side. After the game, Jose made it a point to pick up a club shirt and scarf that was thrown at him and applaud the crowd for their support.
This gesture has gone down incredibly well among the fans, who have lauded the Portuguese gaffer.
— United Xtra (@utdxtra) August 27, 2018
Mourinho stood still, applauding the Stretford End for a good two minutes before walking down the tunnel. Clapped back by the fans who stayed. Some singing “Jose Mourinho”.
— Rob Dawson (@RobDawsonESPN) August 27, 2018
I admire the loyalty of some United fans to Mourinho but it's time to wake up. It's not happening and it's not going to happen
— Oliver Holt (@OllieHolt22) August 27, 2018
Mourinho himself had this to say about the fans: “I had the proof that the best judge in football are the supporters, they are the best judge. I’m really happy, humbled by the way the supporters reacted to the boys, I think it was very much deserved.
“But sometimes players deserve and they don’t get what they deserve, so we have to be humbled by the supporters reactions.”
Now, it remains to be seen how he will shape his team to leap back from this defeat and put in a brilliant showing in order to best repay this level of support.