Chris Smalling says Manchester United’s comeback win at Crystal Palace is proof of the fantastic team spirit and togetherness that exists at Old Trafford under Jose Mourinho.
United were 2-0 down early in the second half as goals from Andros Townsend from Patrick van Aanholt put Palace in control on Monday night before the visitors fought back.
Smalling got Mourinho’s men back into it with a header on 55 minutes before Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matic turned the game on its head and sealed a 3-2 comeback victory.
The win moved United back above Liverpool into second ahead of Saturday’s crunch clash with the Merseysiders at Old Trafford and Smalling admitted afterwards that the manner of the victory proves the togetherness in the camp.
“We had everything in front of us to do, and we did it,” he said. “There’s not many games when we’ve gone 2-0 down, but you can see how close we are as a group that everyone celebrated together, and how much it means to us, because that was a huge win.”
“It shows that no matter how bad we might be playing in that first half, that we can go after teams. And doing it away from home – our home record’s a lot better than our away form – that’s a huge win.”
Smalling was asked if Mourinho had torn into the players at half-time after a disjointed first-half display but the England man said that was not the case and the players were well aware of how they had under-performed and did not need the manager to tell them.
He added: “I don’t think there was any ranting and raving, but there was a degree where we walked in and already knew we weren’t playing enough, needed to increase it.”