Mourinho’s United were beaten 2-1 at the John Smith’s Stadium, with first-half goals from Aaron Mooy and Laurent Depoitre following mistakes by Juan Mata and substitute Victor Lindelof.
Herrera said in a post-match interview with MUTV: “They played with more passion than us in the first 30 minutes,” and Mourinho later took aim at the Spanish midfielder, saying he thinks players should explain their attitude drop in post-match press conferences because he was perplexed by it.
“They beat us on attitude,” said the Portuguese manager. “When I lose matches I like to lose because the opponent was better than us, had more quality than us. When you lose a football match because of attitude, that is really bad.
“I heard Ander Herrera in the flash interviews saying the attitude and desire was poor. Oh my God. When a player says that, when a player feels that, I think they should all go to the press conference and explain why because I cannot explain that.
“I don’t even remember a friendly match where our attitude was so poor. I feel really disappointed and if I was a Manchester United supporter, not a manager, I would be really disappointed.”
In his post-match interview with Sky Sports, Mourinho refused to make any excuses after the game, and said Huddersfield were better in almost every department.
“We deserved to lose. The team that wanted it more, wanted to work more, compete more and be more aggressive, they won. And when the best team win, nothing to say.
“I don’t know why, and I’m not going to be critical of my players with you, I have to analyse with them. But I just want to be as honest and pragmatic as possible and say that the best team won.
“Yes, [Huddersfield] surprised me. I was not expecting that, but the team that started with emotion, aggression, intensity and desire, the team that played the game of their lives, was the team that won. We didn’t deserve more.
“When you have such a negative match, of course you are concerned, but I want to think in a positive way, and think that the players are going to learn something out of it.
“I think we should learn day by day, not just with defeats, we know that to come to a place like Huddersfield for them is a really big, big, big match, and for us it was less than a friendly.
“If we played a friendly with the same attitude as we played today, I would be unhappy.”
Mourinho was in a relatively peaceful mood after the poor performance, and reiterated that he was being honest with his assessment of the game.
He also refused to blame individuals for mistakes, and did not mention Lindelof’s error for the second Huddersfield goal, where the defender allowed a long ball to drop behind him into the path of Depoitre.
“I am disappointed, of course. But the reality is they were stronger than us, so I prefer to be in peace with football, and to be in peace with football is when the best team wins.
“Mistakes [are out of character] yes, but I think mistakes can’t be isolated from context, and the context of the first half was that we opened the door for mistakes to come, so it would be very unfair for me to point the finger at the players involved in the individual mistakes that lead to the goals.
“It was exactly the consequence of what we were in the first half. A bad team deserved to be punished.”