Jose Mourinho Calls Tottenham 'a Pony' in Premier League Title Race

Nov 30, 2020, 8:45 AM GMT
Hugo Lloris, Jose Mourinho
Tottenham picked up a point against Chelsea | Pool/Getty Images
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Tottenham Hotspur returned to the top of the Premier League on Sunday courtesy of a hard-fought 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

Spurs had the better opportunities in the first half but were made to dig in after the break, with Chelsea throwing bodies forward but rarely threatening Hugo Lloris' goal.

It was another efficient performance from Jose Mourinho's side, and here's what the boss had to say after the game.

On Being Disappointed With a Point

Giovani Lo Celso, Christian Pulisic
Mourinho claimed to be disappointed with the result | Pool/Getty Images

“It’s a good point, but there is a point I want to make, which is to tell our supporters that our dressing room is not a happy dressing room,” he claimed (via the club's official website). “That is a great thing. It shows the dynamic, it shows the ambition, the confidence.

“We come here and if we play a little bit better, we win, but we had a good performance, a solid performance. We take a point, that point keeps us at the top of the league, and we are not happy. That is the best feeling you can have.”

He added (via football.london): "I share with my players this mentality that we have. We are totally on the same side. We came here to win and we didn't. We didn't because the opponent was defensively very good, they didn't take risks."

On Chelsea's 'Lack of Risk'

Harry Kane, Tammy Abraham
Mourinho was unimpressed by Chelsea's approach | Clive Rose/Getty Images

"I think it's normal. I think football is prepared. Nowadays, I have and I imagine others also have, coaching staff and good analysts. We go deep on opponents. We know opponents' qualities, we know opponents' dynamics.

"This is the kind of game where I told my players that this was an opportunity to go five points ahead of Chelsea and I'm pretty sure that they didn't want that.

"In the end, it was a game that I believe both teams wanted to win but at the same time both teams don't want to lose.

"In the last ten minutes of the game that was pretty clear. Normally you expect Chelsea at home that a draw is not good for them. You expect some more risk. They did player by player, you know Mount or Kovacic off for others, Abraham off for Giroud and in our case, Ben Davies to left-back and Reguilon left winger."

On Roy Keane's Suggestion of Mind Games

Roy Keane
Keane did not believe Mourinho's claims | Pool/Getty Images

Mourinho's claims of being unhappy with the point were met by scepticism from Roy Keane, who claimed the boss was playing mind games after watching his side sit deep and defend for large parts of the game.

"I respect Roy a lot, I like him a lot. It was an incredible experience working with him, I learned a lot from his experiences.

"But this time I don't agree with him. It's not true. My players are my witnesses, we came here to win. We were ready to punish them if they take the normal risks, the normal dynamics that they had.

"But [Reece] James, two crosses in 90 minutes. [Ben] Chilwell only defended, [N'Golo] Kante always in front of the two centre-backs. They played very well. Tactically and strategically, very well."

On Being in a Title Race

FBL-ENG-PR-CHELSEA-TOTTENHAM
Mourinho was more interested in Joe Rodon | JUSTIN TALLIS/Getty Images

"We are not even in the race so we are not a horse. We are the small, young horse - a pony. We are just a pony, and you see the difference. Joe Rodon was playing for Swansea; Thiago Silva was for many years and still is one of the best centre-backs in the world. And maybe one month of Thiago's salary pays Joe a year's salary. So, calm.

"I'm very happy with Joe, very happy with the profile, and to be with my amazing coaching staff - Joao [Sacramento], Ledley [King], all these guys - coaching and teaching these guys, and working with Joe has been a pleasure.

"I just feel sorry he can't play in the Europa League because it would be a great level of experience for him, and I believe the biggest game he played before this one was Championship play-offs and a Wales national team match, so I'm very pleased that he could come here and for 90 minutes he made one mistake."

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