Tottenham Hotspur recorded an opening day defeat against Everton this evening, falling to a Dominic Calvert-Lewin header in a 1-0 result in North London.
Spurs fans were given their first chance to see both Pierre-Emile Hojberg and Matt Doherty in competitive action since signing them from Southampton and Wolves respectively.
The latter failed to feature in any pre-season games for the Lilywhites as he was sent off to international duty almost instantly after signing his Tottenham contract.
Jose Mourinho has now claimed that the Doherty on show this evening was not the Doherty that fans are used to due to his lack of pre-season.
The Special One said that his new right-wing-back is usually in an incredible condition but had no opportunity to get training sessions or pre-season games under his belt.
This would perhaps beg the question, why did Mourinho opt for an unfit Doherty instead of Serge Aurier who was named on the Tottenham bench?
Jose Mourinho told the press after the game (Football London): “The players who didn’t have pre-season, we don’t have now the possibility to give them a pre-season but we have a lot of matches now to play consecutively and we have to use these matches, not just to win them and the knockout ones are obviously decisive ones with everything decided in 120 minutes or even penalties, and try to use this to improve the form of some players because some of them were really in trouble.
“You can look to Doherty, a player who is normally in incredible condition. He didn’t have pre-season. He went direct from holidays to national team matches. No pre-season at all. Direct and not one single training session, direct from holidays to the national team and he played two consecutive matches and today he was not Matt Doherty like he normally is.
“So these are the things that we knew could happen to us.”
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