- Manchester United conceded a last-gasp 89th-minute goal to lose against Basle
- Defeat means United are still not through but Jose Mourinho is not worried
- United boss says ‘we can lose by some numbers and still go through’ to last 16
- CSKA Moscow would have to beat Man United by six goals to knock them out
A bemused Jose Mourinho was left counting the cost of a first Champions League defeat of the season after Manchester United lost to a late goal in Basle on Wednesday night.
Michael Lang’s 89th-minute winner means that United, Basle and CSKA Moscow can all finish on 12 points in Group A if the Russians win at Old Trafford next month.
However, CSKA would have to beat United by six goals, meaning that Mourinho’s side are almost certain to progress to the knockout stage despite losing their 100 per cent record.
Jose Mourinho is remaining calm despite a last-gasp defeat by Basle in the Champions League
Michael Lang scored late on as Basle beat Manchester United to close the gap in Group A
Manchester United are still in command in Group A despite the defeat in Switzerland
‘Can you help me with the maths?’ said the United boss afterwards.
‘What do we need against CSKA? I don’t even think we need to draw. We can lose by some numbers and still go through.’
Mourinho was even more confused that United had managed to lose a game they dominated in the first half, making several clear chances and hitting the woodwork twice.
‘We lost because in the first half should be 5-0. We could not score one after being so dominant in such an easy way that it seemed impossible not to win,’ he added.
‘But if you miss so many chances you put yourself in this situation.
‘The first half was a perfect half without the goals, was perfect. It was difficult to repeat in the second half.
Mourinho watched his side lose but is aware that they still have one foot in the knockout stages
Sergio Romero stands with his hands on his hips after conceding late on against Basle
‘I think we play a match like this 10 times and nine we win comfortably. The one was now.’
Mourinho acknowledged that his team seemed to be settling for a goalless draw that would have taken them through as group winners when Basle struck.
He added: ‘The fact we knew one point is enough, probably we thought is not now our time to try to win and time to control and in the end we lost. But it’s hard for me to be upset with the players.’