Jose Mourinho has revealed that he would consider finishing fourth in the Premier League with Tottenham this season to be the best achievement in his illustrious career due to the frustrating injury situation the club find themselves in.
Spurs are without two of their best players and most potent attacking threats in Harry Kane and Heung-min Son, while Moussa Sissoko is also still unavailable.
With Son and Kane being the club’s top scorers by some distance in the last couple of seasons, the team’s goal threat has been severely diminished.
During Mourinho’s time at Manchester United, he once claimed that guiding the Red Devils to the second spot in the 2017/18 season was up there with the greatest achievements (The Metro).
When the Spurs boss was asked if finishing in the top four with the Lilywhites this season will trump that achievement, he told Football.London: “Yes. (Because of all the adversity) Yes. Stats are what they are and sometimes very silly, especially when people tries to identify what I called the quantitative stats and forget that football is more about qualitative stats.
“Especially about players’ performances. Sonny and Harry, they score the majority of goals that Tottenham score. This season was so negatively special that we’ll be without them both at the same time for a lot of matches.
“So yes, not for me, my achievement, but collectively for this group of boys if we manage to finish fourth without Harry and Sonny it would be something incredible, an incredible achievement for the boys. So we have to give everything we have.”
He explained that it was not just a matter of having your two best players out injured but also the length of the duo’s lay off as well as the unique requirements of the striker role that made Tottenham’s problem different to other similar situations.
Mourinho added: “It happened and will happen with other clubs and for sure it happened. I don’t think for such a period of time. I remember that for example at Inter I had to play Thiago Motta at central defender because I didn’t have any more.
“This kind of situation can happen but normally happens once or twice because of big or small injuries and five yellow cards. But then the next week the guy with yellow cards is back and then next week the guy with the small injury is back, but this situation for such a long period of time is very, very difficult.
“The position, apart from the goalkeeper, that is so, so, so, so specific and it’s very difficult to find a solution or an adaptation is the striker position.
“If you lose four right-backs you play (Oliver) Skipp or (Moussa) Sissoko at right-back. If you lose centre-backs you can play Eric Dier or Ben Davies at centre-back.
“The specificity of the striker position is very, very difficult. You cannot say Davinson Sanchez go and play centre-forward, it’s very difficult. That’s the way it is. We have to go to game with everything we have.”
Spurs Web Opinion
It is clear that Jose is trying to play on the ‘backs against the wall’ situation to get his players going as well as to play down expectations this season. While the game against Chelsea will be quite tough, we are certainly capable of winning it if we keep it tight at the back as we will have our chances on the break.
Have something to tell us about this article?