Mourinho stands by decision to leave Fellaini in charge of Ming vase

Midfielder’s lapse in concentration cost the 16th-century ceramic masterpiece dear, Back of the Net can reveal.

Jose Mourinho has rejected suggestions that Marouane Fellaini wasn’t the best person to look after his Ming Dynasty vase even though the ceramic masterwork was comprehensively destroyed on the gangly midfielder’s watch.

Despite finding the priceless antique smashed to a thousand pieces a matter of minutes after Fellaini had been charged with its protection, Mourinho has reacted angrily to suggestions that the Belgian is to blame.

The Portuguese tactician has spent much of Monday morning watching video footage of Fellaini stumbling into the vase’s seemingly secure display case under very little apparent threat before raising his hands to the sky in an apparent attempt to deflect blame as the elegant porcelain tumbled to the floor.

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“I have no criticism to make of Marouane,” Mourinho told FourFourTwo, while superglueing several vase fragments back together.

“I had to duck out for around six minutes and so I tasked him with keeping an eye on the vase and had every confidence that he’d be able to see off any threats.

“Now people are saying that I’d have been better off bringing in a reputable security firm or leaving it with Michael Carrick, but it’s easy to be wise after the event.

“In the end everyone makes mistakes and on another evening the same level of contact would only have rocked the display case rather than irrevocably splintering a 500-year-old relic into thousands of minute pieces.”

Mourinho refused to be drawn on whether he was still considering asking Fellaini to babysit next weekend but insisted this latest episode would have no bearing on that decision.

Clearly moved by his manager’s support, Fellaini approached the microphone to offer his thoughts but unfortunately lost his footing, flattening the table and Mourinho.

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