Marcus Rashford ‘deceived’ the referee for United penalty

Paul Clement unhappy with English striker, Jose Mourinho says he did not see incident

Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford talks with Jose Mourinho after the final whistle at Old Trafford. Photograph: PA

Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford talks with Jose Mourinho after the final whistle at Old Trafford. Photograph: PA

 

Paul Clement accused Marcus Rashford of winning Manchester United a penalty by “deceiving” the referee, Neil Swarbrick, in the 1-1 draw with Swansea City on Sunday.

In the final moments of the first half Rashford went to ground when Swansea goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski dived at the forward’s feet, the United player looking for the contact. Wayne Rooney scored from the spot and, though Gylfi Sigurdsson’s 79th-minute free-kick allowed justice to be done, Clement was unhappy with Rashford and stated his goalkeeper was “furious”.

Swansea’s manager said: “My players clearly thought it wasn’t a penalty, and seeing the replay the player (Marcus Rashford]) has deceived the referee. It’s clear. There’s no other way to look at it. The ref seemed to have some doubts because there was a big delay and I spoke to him afterwards and he said he was only receiving confirmation from his assistants. It was a mistake. He went down way before there was contact.

“Lukasz was furious, he’s said: ‘I’ve gone down to get hands on the ball, I can see I can’t get it, I’ve come away from it, and he’s gone down before the contact.’”

Pushed over whether he would describe Rashford’s act as cheating, Clement said: “No I’m not saying cheat. I’m saying deceived. It’s the word I’ve chosen. I would use cheat another time. On this occasion I’m saying he deceived him.”

José Mourinho said he did not see the incident. “I don’t have a view because I didn’t watch and I have Marcus’ opinion and he said that the goalkeeper touched him,” United’s manager said.

On a day when Luke Shaw and Eric Bailly both went off injured increasing United’s casualty list to eight, Mourinho said: “We lost players and we lost points, so yes today was a bad day. We did not look tired and exhausted, we are tired and exhausted. I don’t know about the (fresh) injuries. Luke Shaw’s must be a big injury, because to leave the pitch after 10 minutes I am expecting a very big injury.”

Mourinho will have Paul Pogba and the suspended Marouane Fellaini back for Thursday’s Europa League semi-final first leg at Celta Vigo. He has previously urged Phil Jones and Chris Smalling to return early from their injuries.

“I prefer not to speak about Phil Jones and Chris Smalling,” Mourinho said. “I prefer to speak about Juan Mata giving everything to be available today [as a replacement]. I am grateful for that.”

The manager suggested United’s fans could have helped their team more. “Did the supporters know (about player fatigue)? Because if they did they would be more supportive of the players. At the moment, we cannot walk from the bed to the toilet and not break a leg.”

The draw set a United club record of 25 league games unbeaten. Of the Europa League match, Mourinho said: “We will give everything on Thursday. That is sure. Whether we go to the final or not doesn’t matter. I am really happy with the guys.”

Swansea remain third-bottom but closed to two points of Hull City with three matches remaining. “It’s still very tight,” Clement said. “We are just concentrating on doing the best we can. Our form over the past two games has been good, we have to keep this going until the very last game of the season.”

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