Mourinho slams massive workload

Mourinho slams massive workload

LONDON • Jose Mourinho believes that players are being put in danger by the football authorities after Tottenham beat Chelsea 5-4 on penalties on Tuesday to progress to the quarter-finals of the League Cup after a 1-1 draw.

Spurs were playing the second of four games in eight days in three different competitions.

Eric Dier was the only outfield player retained from the Tottenham line-up that started Sunday’s 1-1 draw in the Premier League against Newcastle, and the England defender had to dash from the field for a toilet break in the second-half.

“The number of minutes played is dangerous. What I did today with Eric Dier is very dangerous,” said Mourinho, suggesting that dehydration could have led to the defender’s problem.

“It should be forbidden to play two matches in 48 hours. What Eric Dier did is not human.”

Timo Werner’s first goal for Chelsea compounded Mourinho’s woes in a dominant start from Frank Lampard’s men.

But Erik Lamela levelled for Spurs seven minutes from time and new Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy was unable to stop Dier, Lamela, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Lucas Moura and Harry Kane scoring from the spot.

Tammy Abraham, Cesar Azpilicueta, Jorginho and Emerson also converted their penalties.

But Mason Mount’s effort clipped the post to the delight of the watching Gareth Bale, who could be fit to feature for Spurs in the last eight with the matches not till late December.

“Anything can happen on penalties,” said Lampard. “You want to stay in these competitions of course but there’s lots to like. We dominated the first half but the game changed (in the second).”

THREE’S A CROWD

I told the players they should only think about this game, but I have to think about three games.

” JOSE MOURINHO, Spurs manager, whose side played Chelsea in the League Cup on Tuesday and will face Maccabi Haifa in the Europa League today and Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday.

Mourinho claimed the fixture pile-up gave him no choice but to prioritise today’s Europa League play-off tie against Maccabi Haifa.

“I told the players they should only think about this game, but I have to think about three games,” added the Portuguese manager, who faces his former club Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday.

“I cannot believe in 48 hours we are playing a European game. The boys were absolutely phenomenal.”

Lampard made eight changes, but Werner was one of those retained from the 3-3 draw at West Brom on Saturday and he took the opportunity to get his first goal after moving from Bundesliga team RB Leipzig.

Spurs debutant Sergio Reguilon was twice at fault in the build-up as he gifted possession to Azpilicueta and then dived in trying to block the Spaniard’s cross, which allowed the Chelsea captain to pick out Werner at the edge of the box to arrow a shot into the bottom corner.

Mourinho then showed his intent by introducing Kane with 20 minutes to go.

But moments later the Spurs boss was marching down the tunnel after Dier, as the defender made a dash to the dressing room before quickly returning.

Chelsea did not make the most of a brief period with an extra man, as Callum Hudson-Odoi fired over and Werner’s fierce effort was saved by Hugo Lloris.

“He wasn’t happy but there was nothing I could do about it, nature was calling,” said Dier of being pursued by Mourinho.

“I heard there was a chance, but thankfully they didn’t score.”

Chelsea were punished when Lamela slotted home at the far post to send the game to a shoot-out and ultimately Spurs into the last eight.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS