CL Failure Could Lead To League Glory For Liverpool

Benik Afobe was re-signed by Wolves for £10m...only to be sold to Stoke for £12m a few days later

"I am not confident, and the market closes today, so it's time, at least for me, to stop thinking about the market because the market will be closed".

Asked whether he he believed there would be any movement in or out of Old Trafford on deadline day, Mourinho replied: "The information I have is no".

Manchester City are favourites to be the first team since Neville's United to retain the Premier League, with the chasing pack hoping that a renewed focus on the Champions League might lead to City taking their eye off the defence of their title.

Mourinho's targets for that position were primarily Leicester City's Harry Maguire, Jérôme Boateng of Bayern Munich and Toby Alderweireld of Tottenham.

He has spent almost £70m to bring in Fred, Dalot and Grant this summer but only considers Fred an automatic starter and has been keen to boost his first XI with a central defender and a right winger.

Mourinho was speaking at a 9am press conference and his words did not equivocally rule out the possibility of something happening. However, there was no indication that it was a deliberate tactic on his part or that he was being economical with the truth.

The Red Devils host Leicester City at Old Trafford on Friday in the Premier League's opener and Mourinho had already looked short on options due to the club's World Cup players.

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He had been hoping for more additions to a squad which finished 19 points adrift of Premier League champions Man City in 2017-18, but has seen his hands tied in the transfer market.

Is not an opportunity, is a match, an important match, we would prefer to have a couple more days but decision was to be first to play and that's it.

Shearer said: It has been a long time since anyone won back-to-back titles but I think City will win the Premier League again because of Pep - he won't want their standards slipping.

Antonio Valencia, Marcos Rojo, Diogo Dalot, Ander Herrera and Nemanja Matic are all injured, while Jose Mourinho will check on the fitness of those that returned late from the World Cup.

"They returned on Monday, trained Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and today so you can imagine they are not really fit and ready but we have needs", Mourinho said. In football you need time to work and players on the pitch to work and we didn't have that until now.

"Is hard for me to understand, to feel, to believe we finish second - which I keep saying, and it is sometimes hard to believe, that I won eight championships and three Premier League's but I keep feeling the second last season was one of my biggest achievements in the game". "Every team in the league will be thinking 'what a great midfield that is.' The way in which United are being talked about this pre-season it's as if they've got a load of bums playing for them".

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