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Jose Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson share ONE vital habit in common

The Special One is replicating his predecessor with his own version of Fergie time

The ‘Cruyff turn’, the ‘Makelele role’.

You have to be pretty special to become immortalised by a footballing phrase.


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‘Fergie time’ is no different.

Couple more minutes ref

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Couple more minutes ref

Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United had a knack of leaving it late to win games, none more so than their unforgettable Champions League triumph over Bayern Munich in 1999.

And the modern day Red Devils are showing shades of that relentlessly successful Fergie era.

This season, Jose Mourinho’s side have already scored a whopping 11 goals in the last 10 minutes of Premier League games, including Anthony Martial’s winner against Spurs last Saturday.

Martial’s late winner last weekend sent Old Trafford into meltdown

Reuters
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Martial’s late winner last weekend sent Old Trafford into meltdown

That’s an incredible 23% of the league’s late goals.

Mourinho has been accused almost tediously in recent weeks of parking the bus but Ferguson himself knew when to accept that substance was more important than style.

Remember John O’Shea’s late, late winner at Anfield 10 years ago? The prime example of smash and grab against a title rival.

Better late than never, John

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Better late than never, John

The Special One is cut from the same cloth, biding his time and waiting for his opposite number to let their guard down and expose themselves.

At Anfield last month Mourinho was again accused of anti-football but in reality he was anticipating a gamble from Jurgen Klopp that didn’t arise.

Last weekend, Spurs looked good for a point until tiredness sapped their weary legs in the final stages – and United pounced.

Jose Mourinho admits he lives 20 minutes in the future to keep himself under pressure

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The master of timing

Mourinho, encapsulated through the indestructible Nemanja Matic, is the master of composed discipline.

Pep Guardiola might be the purists’ choice but both managers are winners in their own right.

Mourinho goes back to Chelsea this weekend and you can bet your bottom dollar how United will set up.

Jose Mourinho shakes hands with Antonio Conte during Manchester United against Chelsea this season

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Mourinho and Conte lock horns again on Sunday

Solidity and patience for 75 minutes before relying on one of Martial, Romelu Lukaku or Marcus Rashford to be the game changer.

It might not be pretty, but when was that a necessary character trait of champions?

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