Manager Jose Mourinho says Manchester United job is the most challenging of his career

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho tells Oliver Kay of the Times about his pleasure at his teams' transfer market activities this summer, about how the current job is the most challenging one of his career, and that he wants to take United to the top of English Football.

Jose Mourinho says he wants two more players
Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho's footballing philosophy revolves around the 90 minutes, each game a building brick in his season's work, each season no less than a race to win as many trophies as possible.

"I like to put pressure on myself, I don't like the sea to be flat," Mourinho tells Kay. "I don't like, for people to be speaking about my team the way they are speaking. I think it's very premature. I prefer the other way around. Put a little bit of pressure on it."

Also read: I prepare clubs for success says Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho

Mourinho's first season in charge of United was a gruelling one. They won the EFL Cup and the Europa League but finished a lowly sixth in the Premier League, scoring just 54 goals in 38 matches.

The new campaign has started far more auspiciously — three wins out of three, ten goals scored and none conceded. Nemanja Matic has brought assurance to midfield, helping Paul Pogba to flourish. Romelu Lukaku has hit the ground running.

"It's about having the most challenging project that I can have. Trying to find again success is a challenging period for the club and something that I'm enjoying."

He is pleased by United's work in the transfer market. Ideally he would like to have signed Gareth Bale or Ivan Perisic, an experienced player who could add speed and penetration from the wings, but he has more reason than several of his peers to reflect on the summer transfer window with satisfaction.

"I think Lukaku on August 31 would have been £150m. Matic would have been £60m or £70m. Neymar to PSG changed everything. If the biggest transfer in history had still been Pogba, I think Philippe Coutinho would now be in Barcelona at £101m," Mourinho says.

"Lukaku and Matic, now, would have cost us £200m in total. But because we did it in the first part of the summer, it was much less. I think we did well in financial terms and well in preparation terms, getting them before the season started. That is not crucial but it is important."

Full steam ahead for a Premier League title challenge, given the famous Jose Mourinho second season syndrome? "We're going to fight against very good teams, but we're going to try," he says.

"I have said three (summer) transfer windows is what I need to have the team I want to have, the team I think can bring Manchester United to the top of English football and to close the gap to the top of European football again, but I'm not going to wait for the third transfer window to try to reach it. Again, I like to accelerate. I like to chase. I don't like to wait."