Jose Mourinho has revealed he mentally tried to prepare his Tottenham players for their first behind-closed-doors Premier League match following the coronavirus pandemic.
Spurs played their first Premier League game of the resumption of the top flight against Manchester United on Friday where they were dealt a late blow when the away side secured a draw.
Bruno Fernandes’ late penalty claimed United a point after cancelling out Steven Bergwijn’s first-half strike which gave Spurs a 1-0 lead (BBC).
Mourinho believes he and the players prepared themselves as well as they could have for playing without any fans in the stadium.
“I think I prepared myself very well, I tried to prepare the players also, we spoke many times about this, spoke many times about instead of thinking about the people not here, thinking about the desire of the people to be here and try to play for all of them,” Mourinho told the Spurs website.
“I think we managed to play a proper game. I would imagine with fans, I would imagine with more matches before this, the game would be different, but I thought it was a good game in the end.”
Spurs had trained in the empty Tottenham Hotspur Stadium just two weeks ago in a 11v11 training game in an attempt to get a feeling for the stadium again.
Just a few days after they welcomed Norwich City to N17 for a friendly game behind closed doors.
Spurs Web Opinion
There was a time in the second half where after United equalised we began to push for a winner. By no means would playing in front of the fans guarantee Spurs the winner, but you feel the presence of the fans would have gave the tired players an extra boost.
Have something to tell us about this article?