José Mourinho states that top-four finish is "impossible" after Arsenal defeat

Manchester United manager José Mourinho has conceded that a top-four finish for the Red Devils is now "impossible", after their 25-game unbeaten Premier League came to an end with the 2-0 defeat to Arsenal.

Needing to win the Europa League

Champions League football remains the only priority for United this season, and after securing a crucial away goal in Thursday's Europa League semi-final first-leg their other option in Europe's elite competition led them to needing a good result from the trip to the Emirates Stadium.

However they were deflated by the Gunners with goals from Granit Xhaka and ex-devil Danny Welbeck put a big dent into their top four hopes, four points now separate themselves and rivals Manchester City and Mourinho admitted that their hope of finishing in the top four is finished.

"It's impossible to finish in the top four," Mourinho admitted to his post-match press conference. "I don't think other teams playing one match per week, and being in a great situation, will lose."

"And we go with everything on Thursday," he stated in reference to Thursday's second-leg against Celta Vigo. "We cannot go with everything against Tottenham."

Mourinho added: "We have to chase the Champions League by winning the Europa League."

Going to know his name

Sunday's defeat saw a number of players return from long-term injuries to ease the pressure on Mourinho's bare bones squad choices, with Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Juan Mata all making an return to Mourinho's starting XI.

The coach promised to put the kids out for the trip to North London with Matty Willock, Scott McTominay, Matthew Olosunde and Demetri Mitchell all travelling with the squad, it was Alex Tuanzebe who made his first start in the league and Mourinho praised his performance in keeping Alexis Sánchez quiet.

"The kid [Axel Tuanzebe] was the same," Mourinho stated in reference to the 19-year-old's performance. "I think he did an amazing job and I think Alexis [Sanchez] knows his name because the kid played very well."