I am no 'villain' for United fans - Mourinho

SHOWS: LONDON, ENGLAND, UK (DECEMBER 3, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

1. (SOUNDBITE) (English) TOTTENHAM MANAGER, JOSE MOURINHO, SAYING ABOUT HOW HE IS NO VILLAIN FOR UNITED FANS:

"No, I'm not a villain, I'm not an enemy, but I am the coach that is trying to win against Manchester United and that's the way I think they are going to look at me. In relation to Solskjaer, Solskjaer is the guy that tomorrow is going to try to win the game for United fans, so of course they're going to support him, they're not going to support me. One thing, is a nice reaction. Another thing is support so I think the nice reaction probably is to me, but then during the game the support will be to Solksjaer and that's the nature of the game, and the nature of an incredible place with an incredible history, and with fans that understand clearly the passion for a club. They love their club, so they love Solskjaer."

2. WHITE FLASH

3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) TOTTENHAM MANAGER, JOSE MOURINHO, SAYING ABOUT HOW HE LEARNED FROM TIME AT UNITED (QUOTES NELSON MANDELA):

"It's a bit like Mr. (Nelson) Mandela was saying sometime you never lose. You win or your learn. And at United I won and I learned and my time after I left was a good time for me. So, is not for me to analyse United now. Now, I analyse United as a team, as an opponent."

STORY: Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said rumours he feared being fired from his job were 'blatant lies'.

Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday (December 3), Solskjaer was responding to British media reports that Solskjaer had told his players he risked losing his job if United were to lose to Tottenham on Wednesday (December 4) and Manchester City on Saturday.

The Norwegian also said his side will be focused on getting their campaign back on track when former boss Jose Mourinho arrives at Old Trafford with his new team.

Mourinho, who United dismissed last December and replaced with Solskjaer, returned to management with Tottenham last month and has guided them to two league victories ahead of his return to Old Trafford.

By contrast, United have struggled for consistency and sit ninth on 18 points. But Solskjaer backed his players to turn things around, saying they did not need extra motivation in the form of Mourinho.

The Portuguese coach said he expects a positive reaction from United fans on his return to the club, but knows that they will be backing Solskjaer all the way to get a result against Spurs.

(Production: Francis Maguire)