‘Enjoy to defend’ – Mourinho analyses the Crystal Palace challenge ahead

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Jose Mourinho has admitted that he expects a very difficult test against Crystal Palace tomorrow evening since the Eagles are always very well organised defensively.

Back to back wins over Burnley and Fulham have brought Tottenham right back into the race for the top four spots. Spurs now sit just five points off Chelsea in fourth with a game in hand over the Blues.

A win over Palace tomorrow would see the North Londoners leapfrog West Ham on goal difference, a prospect that looked almost impossible just two weeks ago when the Hammers beat Spurs to go nine points clear.

However, Mourinho is under no illusion about the difficulty of the task his side face on Sunday against Roy Hodgson’s men.

He told Football.London: “Palace is a difficult match, they defend well, they have a lot of good defenders, people who enjoy to defend, enjoys playing in a defensive team.

“A very good coach, Roy and his staff, they know very well how to play, the 4-4-2, they are aggressive in the counter, they are good at set-pieces, they have giants who can win the ball and can win the game in the opposition half.”

While Palace have a good defensive record this season, as they always do, Hodgson’s men have struggled to find the back of the net in recent weeks.

Mourinho admitted that he expects that to change given the quality that the Eagles have up front.

When asked for the reasons behind their recent goal drought, the Tottenham boss responded: “I don’t know why.

“When you look at Crystal Palace you are talking about Zaha, Benteke, Ayew, Batshuayi, Mateta and to speak about very good attacking players like Townsend, Eze, they have everything to score goals.

“[It’s] probably just a moment. The two matches we played against them, one this season, one last season they scored and they took points away from us so I have lots of respect for them. That’s it.”

Spurs Web Opinion

As we saw against Man Utd on Wednesday, Palace can be very hard to beat when they are on their A-game. We need to get an early goal to force them to open up. It could end up being quite a frustrating afternoon otherwise.

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