Football

MOURINHO: WE DESERVED TO LOSE

Jose Mourinho was scathing in his assessment of Chelsea and believes his side deserved to exit the Champions League to Paris St Germain yesterday morning (Singapore time).

The Blues twice allowed 10-man PSG to come from behind to draw 2-2 and win an ill-tempered last-16 tie on away goals at Stamford Bridge.

"We didn't deserve to go through," Mourinho said.

"When a team cannot defend two corners and concede two goals, a team don't deserve to win.

"The individual performances were not good enough and, when you concede two goals from two corners, it's about lack of concentration, lack of responsibility to cope with the markers and the space you have to control.

"When a team cannot cope with the pressure of being one player more and playing at home... we couldn't cope with that pressure.

"We deserved to be punished with this draw, defeat."

The first leg was drawn 1-1 and Chelsea's advantage grew when Zlatan Ibrahimovic was harshly sent off after 31 minutes.

Gary Cahill's strike nine minutes from the end of normal time was cancelled out by former Chelsea defender David Luiz, but the hosts went ahead for a second time through an Eden Hazard penalty early in extra time.

PSG captain Thiago Silva, who conceded the spot-kick for handball, was denied from a corner by Thibaut Courtois but then netted with a header moments later to make it 2-2 on the night and send the visitors through.

The French outfit were eliminated from the competition last term by Chelsea on the away goals rule, but advanced to the last eight for a third straight season.

PSG coach Laurent Blanc defended his team's combative approach.

"Matches at the highest level are full of pressure and tension," he said.

"Things do go on on both sides. Both sides put pressure on the opposition, and Chelsea did their fair share of that.

"It had happened even before the match with their manager, exerting pressure on the referee. That's part of the mind games, and all fair and good.

"But if you take out these elements of unsporting behaviour, I think my team were better than Chelsea in every area of the pitch.

"PSG's qualification is deserved. We tried to play more football than Chelsea and created more dangerous chances.

"We were very solid defensively. On the set-pieces, the centre backs were great, both offensively and defensively, as it was their goals that enabled us to go through. It was a fantastic performance by the whole squad."

Mourinho and Chelsea, meanwhile, are left to focus on their bid for the Blues' first Premier League title in five years, which resumes on Sunday at home to Southampton.

The Portuguese is demanding an explanation from his players for the sub-par performance.

"I want to know," he said. "I told the players after the game that it's not the moment to speak with them about it. (On Thursday), we will try to analyse that.

"For me, it was a surprise. So I'm disappointed, but I try always to be pragmatic and, when the opponents were better than us, the first feeling is we deserved to lose. Analyse the situation is the next step.

"We need to react. We have the Premier League to win and we are in a good situation. There's no time to cry. If we win the Premier League and League Cup, this season is still a fantastic season for us."

Chelsea are five points clear of second-placed Manchester City with a game in hand. - PA Sport.

Champions League