Friday, 23 December 2016

Man United's Jose Mourinho: Defensive Chelsea tough to catch

Manchester United manager Jose
Mourinho has told Sky Sports it will
be "very difficult" to catch Chelsea
this season as they are unlikely to
drop many points due to their
defensive tactics.
Mourinho once had a reputation for
playing defensive football but he
has instilled a more positive,
attacking style into United this
season.
Chelsea, meanwhile, have been
efficiently churning out clean sheets
in recent months -- including three
1-0 wins in a row in the Premier
League from their last three games
-- and are first in the table, 13
points clear of United.
When asked if sixth-placed United
can still push for the title, Mourinho
said:

"You have to be honest and
say that is very difficult. It's not just
the difference in points, it's also the
Chelsea philosophy of playing.

"They score one goal and they win.
They defend a lot. They defend well.
They are winning and, in the last 20
minutes, they bring defenders in.

"They don't care what people say,
what people think. They just want
to win. And, because of that, I don't
see them losing many points."
Mourinho also reflected on his
dismissal for kicking a water bottle
during the 1-1 home draw against
West Ham United on Nov. 27,
leading to a touchline ban. On the
day of the incident, the United
manager had not spoken about the
incident, sending his assistant Rui
Faria to the postmatch news
conference instead.
He said:

"First of all, it was a rubber
bottle. Secondly, I am not so
powerful to kick the bottle and the
bottle kills somebody in the stands.

"But I know that I can't do that.
When [Anthony] Taylor and
[Jonathan] Moss [the officials who
dismissed Mourinho] came to me, I
didn't even complain. I just
apologised and I walked away. I
know that there is nothing to
complain about."
Mourinho also denied that there is
unhappiness within his squad
about the decision to schedule an
afternoon training session on
Christmas Day.
The Portuguese said:

"We have to
train. We play on the 26th [at home
against Sunderland], so we have to
train on the 25th -- in my idea, and
for my staff, it is the correct thing to
do.

"The players know it is the correct
thing to do. It's not true that
everybody is upset with it. It's not
true that everyone that works at
Old Trafford is very upset with me.

"We come just by ourselves -- a
couple of people just to support our
light training session -- and then we
go to the hotel and we prepare for
the Sunderland match."
Looking ahead to the next calendar
year, he added: "2017 will be better
than 2016. I think we are really
together. There is a sense of unity
between us and the fans. I'm loving
a lot that feeling."

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