New boss Paul Lambert watched from the Old Trafford stands ahead of taking over a team in the bottom three on Tuesday and he will have been encouraged by debutant Moritz Bauer's performance.
"They were very positive, they had the best chances in the first half, and then we were a bit lucky to score the second goal, another handsome one".
"It's good that they lose points but we have to go back to winning because we want to catch them again".
He added: "We're not looking to the past".
"In the second half it was different, the second half was harder for them, 2-0 was difficult for them to react to, we were in control of the game".
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"We just want to catch City. We just have to focus on ourselves, keep winning and I think we will be OK".
Antonio Valencia and Anthony Martial in the first half, and Romelu Lukaku after the break, were on the scoresheet as Jose Mourinho finally beat struggling Stoke as United manager at the fourth time of asking. We scored an fantastic goal, but it was not enough to hurt them because they had a very good reaction.
"Paul Lambert said a few words to the players in the hotel before the game, but he showed me the respect, it was my team today".
Stoke, meanwhile, are in real danger of relegation this season as they sit 18th in the table, but have sacked former United striker Mark Hughes in an attempt to arrest an alarming decline. And Paul Pogba feels the team is going to do whatever required catching Guardiola's men. "Most probably, a player like him, he probably has other big clubs who are interested".
And having missed this term's league losses to Huddersfield, Chelsea and City, it is now 35 games since Pogba was involved in a Premier League defeat - a heavy 4-0 reverse against Chelsea in October 2016.
"In the second half, we played confidently and fast and aggressive and I liked the second half". There's been too much negativity, too much.