Tottenham Coach Mourinho fires jab at Klopp and Guardiola over fixture congestion complaints
Totteham Hotspurs faced a stretch of eight games in 18 days at the start of the season, a fact their manager was keen to bring up on Friday
Jose Mourinho aimed a dig at managers who have complained about fixture congestion like Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp, saying nobody cried for his Tottenham side during a brutal early-season stretch of games.
Klopp has been most outspoken about the need to better space out matches, as the Liverpool boss has seen a number of his players injured in the early season.
His latest rant came at the weekend as he told BT Sport: “Playing 12:30 after Wednesday is really dangerous for the Premier League players.”
Speaking ahead of Sunday’s north London derby against Arsenal though, Mourinho said he didn’t receive much support from his peers during a stretch of eight games in 18 days at the start of the season.
“By the way, we played four matches in one week and nobody was crying or supporting us about it. And now my colleagues, when do they play these matches?” Mourinho said.
Several Premier League teams have a game in hand over Spurs, with Man Utd and Man City having games pushed back after they were involved in European competition in August.
“What is very difficult to accept is that four clubs have one match less than the others and I don’t even know when they’re going to play these matches,” Mourinho said.
“I don’t even know when Burnley, Manchester City, Aston Villa, Manchester United and probably Newcastle and Aston Villa twice [are going to play].
“It’s difficult to accept that because it can affect the competition. But I was trying to know. I was trying for an answer this week and no one can give me that answer.”
Mourinho admitted that Sunday’s derby against Arsenal has more riding on it due to Spurs entering the match atop the Premier League table.
“It means more when we are not in the position we are now,” he said. “Because now we are in such a good position it is a little bit different. Because we want the points we are not just like: ‘We want to beat Arsenal because to beat Arsenal is the only good thing we can give to our fans.’
“It happened last season when we played Arsenal in the last part of the season. It was about winning against Arsenal to give something good, to have a good feeling.
“But we never forget the fact there are historical rivalries and what it means for the fans. Even for people that were not born at Tottenham, and many of us are in this situation. When you arrive at the club you understand the culture, you learn the culture and you share the values with the fans.”