Football

Jose Mourinho slams Tottenham Hotspur's ‘lazy pressing, bad fitness’

Jose Mourinho accused some of his players of laziness and bad fitness after his lacklustre Tottenham Hotspur side's 1-0 home defeat by Everton in their English Premier League opener yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Dominic Calvert-Lewin's 55th-minute header settled the issue and Spurs' display, especially in the second half, led to some harsh words from manager Mourinho.

"Against good teams like Everton, if you let them play from the back, they are comfortable with very good technical players. If you don't press them, you give them ammunition," he said.

"We were lazy in our pressing. That is a consequence of bad fitness, bad pre-season. Some players didn't even have a pre-season. Some players had a wrong state of mind."

Tottenham have been the subject of a candid documentary chronicling Mourinho's arrival at the club to replace former manager Mauricio Pochettino last November.

It might be just as well the behind-the-scenes cameras have been switched off after a plodding display against Everton.

DISAPPOINTED

Said Mourinho: "I'm disappointed with my team... I'm so happy no more (filming for the) Amazon (documentary) because these things can stay in between us."

Former EPL champion and Golden Boot winner Chris Sutton believes Mourinho is to blame for his team's "rotten" performance, saying on the BBC: "Is that the type of football Spurs fans want to see? And then to come out with excuses, excuses, excuses.

"That was poor from Jose and his team were rotten. He has to carry the can for that."

Ex-Aston Villa and Manchester United goalkeeper Mark Bosnich added that Mourinho has to be wary of "losing the dressing room" with his harsh public assessments.

He said on Sky Sports: "He might be looking for a different type of reaction but if you lose a big player, that will bring with him another four or five players from the dressing room and that could be a road to ruin."

Meanwhile, former Spurs midfielder Jermaine Jenas felt Everton new boy James Rodriguez showed his former team what they are missing, saying Tottenham "haven't had anyone with real guile since Christian Eriksen left". - REUTERS

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