Jose Mourinho has revealed that he and his coaching staff made it clear to Gareth Bale before Tottenham’s clash against Burnley that the winger needed to come off as soon as he felt fatigued.
Bale got seventy minutes under his belt in Spurs’ 4-0 win over the Clarets before being replaced by Erik Lamela in what was just the Welshman’s third Premier League start of the season.
The 31-year-old’s performance has understandably dominated the headlines, with the wide man showing glimpses of his old self as he looked to take defenders on and made a number of sprints both on and off the ball.
The confident manner in which Bale curled home this second goal on Sunday suggested that he now had his confidence back after the struggles he endured over the past few months.
Mourinho admitted in his post-match press conference that while he would like to play the on-loan Real Madrid man in every match that was not possible since they had to exercise caution over his fitness.
The Spurs boss revealed that he had made it clear to Bale even before the match that his minutes had to be managed carefully.
The Portuguese coach told BBC Sport after Tottenham’s 4-0 win: “He (Bale) handled himself well, we are all doing that together, him, me and my staff and medical and sport science we’re all in it together.
“We said to him don’t let the fatigue arrive so you have to go off before the fatigue comes and we did that so of course, we are managing him.
“We left him on the bench in the Europa League thinking that today he could be important and can’t play two matches in a short space of time. His experience helps a lot.”
Spurs Web Opinion
Football fans are an impatient bunch and it was no surprise that many Spurs fans already seemed to have written Bale off after his struggles over the past few months. However, it is now clear that Mourinho and the Welshman himself were careful about managing the workload in order get the 31-year-old back to his sharpest. Hopefully, that can pay off over the next few months.
Have something to tell us about this article?