Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho assesses Tottenham Hotspur’s tactical flexibility ahead of the London derby today.
League leaders Chelsea host Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge today as they look to keep up the pressure on the chasing pack. For Tottenham however, this is an opportunity for them to cut down their gap with Arsenal and Liverpool with none of them playing this weekend. Chelsea do have a wonderful record against Spurs heading into this game. The Blues are unbeaten in their last 23 homes games against Tottenham in the league and the last time Spurs won at Stamford Bridge was back in 1990.
But Jose Mourinho didn’t ponder of such statistics, instead he has insisted that Spurs have always been a difficult opponent during his tenure at the club. He stressed on the importance of winning this in order to achieve their “top-four” objective.
“We want to try to win and I believe they will do the same. We want our top-four position safe and, at the moment, the biggest threat is Tottenham because they are fifth, the closest team to the top four.
“If we can get a result against them we can say, almost for sure, our top-four objective is going in a very good direction.
“I don’t know [When asked about their amazing record against Spurs]. Maybe it’s a coincidence because Tottenham are always a good team and a difficult opponent.
“I don’t remember in my previous years having an easy match against Tottenham, so it’s a very difficult game.
“I just say we have to try to win the next match, it doesn’t matter about the opponent, stadium or competition. Nothing is hidden, tomorrow we want to try to win the game, maybe we won’t win but the objective is that we are going to try to win.” – The Chelsea manager said.
Jose Mourinho also talked about Tottenham’s tactical flexibility and their ability to switch to different formations at ease.
“In the last two months I would say they played a couple of matches with 4-4-2, the game against Cardiff and the second leg against Dnipro.
“In all the other games they just played with Adebayor up front. I don’t know what they are going to do but clearly they are jumping between 4-3-3, 4-4-2 and 4-2-3-1. They have that capacity, lots of good players and lots of options, so the manager can jump from situation to situation without problems.” – Mourinho added.
A lot of Chelsea players were away on international duty in the midweek and the Chelsea boss insisted that this proved to be hindrance in their preparation for this big match.
“It was just a week, not double fixtures, just one match, so I only had to wait for them for a few days.
“It wasn’t so boring, but after a game on Wednesday and some of them going to other continents we cannot train properly, we just have to prepare for the match the best way we can.” – He explained.
Mourinho was also asked to comment on his incident involving Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew, where he appeared to have head-butted a Hull City player.
“I spoke with Alan a couple of hours after the incident, he knows he made a mistake and he knows he has to pay with a punishment.
“For me, what’s more important is that he’s a good friend and a great guy, I prefer to stay with that than the mistake. He made a mistake and he will pay for the mistake.” – He said in the pre-match press conference.