Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho has questioned how Eden Hazard is yet to win the player of the month award, while reacting to Yaya Toure’s comments ahead of their match against Aston Villa.
West Ham manager Sam Allardyce won the manager of the month award as he managed his team to four consecutive Premier League wins in February. Mourinho believes Allardyce deserves the award, but was cynical about the fact that Eden Hazard was yet to win a “player of the month” award this season despite his good performances. Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge was the winner of this award this month.
“I think Sam deserves it, he won four consecutive matches in February. When you win every match in the month normally you have to win the award. I didn’t in some of the months where I won every match, but that’s me. Sam deserves it because, like a shotgun, he took the team from a dangerous position.
“For Hazard to arrive at March without one single award makes me laugh.” – He explained.
Chelsea host Aston Villa on Saturday as they look to maintain their lead at the top of the table. The Blues are coming into this game on the back of a fine run of form and are yet to lose a Premier League game since December, when Stoke City defeated them 3-2. They managed a convincing win over Tottenham Hotspur in the London derby last week and will be looking to maintain that momentum as we head into the closing stages of the season.
Chelsea’s title rivals Arsenal and Manchester City were knocked out of the Champions League recently, but Jose Mourinho believes it wouldn’t necessarily provide them with an advantage to focus solely on the league, and that they could encounter similar fate against Galatasaray in the upcoming midweek clash.
“It depends on us, if we manage to go through we will have two matches in the quarter-finals against a big opponent and that means a lot.
“If Galatasaray beat us and we are out of the Champions League, everybody has the same conditions.” – The Chelsea manager said.
Mourinho also responded to Yaya Toure’s recent comments, where the Manchester City midfielder insisted that the Chelsea boss has disrespected his rivals. The Portuguese manager stated that he was only supporting fellow English clubs in the European tournament.
“If to say the English teams can do it, that Arsenal and City have enough quality to go to Munich and the Camp Nou and turn things around, if to support the teams from the country where I work is a lack of respect, okay.
“Man City and Arsenal showed I was right, they had enough quality to do it and they both played very good matches, so I don’t think that’s a lack of respect, it’s support. In the same way I say that Man City have three matches in hand and they’re capable of winning all three and going top, if that’s a lack of respect he has a strange concept of what a lack of respect is.
“I tried to be respectful with the two English teams and I want to say the same about Man United. I think Man United are a better team than Olympiacos and I hope they do it. Tomorrow, if Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick or Rio Ferdinand say Mourinho is not being respectful with us, I think they are wrong, because I support the English teams and I wasn’t happy the English teams went out of the competition.” – Mourinho explained.
With Arsenal facing Tottenham and Liverpool traveling to face Manchester United on Sunday, Chelsea could potentially extend their lead at the top of the table if their rivals slip up. But Mourinho insisted that he is more concerned by their result against Aston Villa, who he believes could prove to be a difficult hurdle.
“Tomorrow we have a very difficult game. Three points would be fabulous, one point is not a bad result at Villa Park. Zero points would be a negative result but we’ll just go match by match and after Villa comes Arsenal in the Premier League.
“We are on a good run but every game is difficult and the difference between winning and not winning is very narrow. We don’t look at the table because the table is fake. We don’t look at the matches of our direct opponents because it doesn’t help. If I watch Tottenham against Arsenal and I really want Tottenham to win the match, does it help? No, so we play our matches, try to do the best we can and nothing else.” – He added.
Mourinho was pleased about the fact that his side have displayed great character in the both their matches against Fulham and Tottenham, where they won the game on strong second half performances after struggling to dominate in the first half.
“The team is motivated and the team is strong. We have a good mentality and spirit but not because of the table. They know the table is fake and they know we have to try to win every match and try to improve.
“We have clear objectives for next season but if we can reach them this season we won’t say no. We are very calm, very relaxed and that’s important. Against Fulham we played very badly in the first half but the team was comfortable and calm. Tottenham played a very good first half against us and we didn’t panic, so to be calm and relaxed is the best thing.”- Mourinho said in his pre-match press conference.