Jose Mourinho defends football behind closed doors

‘Millions are watching. So if one day we walk into this empty stadium, it will not be empty’

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has defended football behind closed doors. Photograph: PA

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has defended football behind closed doors. Photograph: PA

 

Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho believes resuming the Premier League season, halted due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and playing it to completion will be good for the sport.

Soccer in England was suspended indefinitely last month due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, which has caused more than 26,000 deaths in the United Kingdom. Premier League clubs are set to meet on Friday to discuss ways to finish the season.

Spurs’ first-team squad returned to the club’s facilities for individual training sessions this week as they prepare for a possible resumption.

“If we play the remaining nine matches this season it will be good for every one of us. It will be good for football, for the Premier League,” Mourinho told Sky Sports. “If we play football behind closed doors (without fans) I’d like to think that football is never behind closed doors.

“With cameras, it means that millions and millions are watching. So if one day we walk into this empty stadium, it will not be empty, not at all.”

The suspension has given Spurs’ injured players such as Harry Kane, Moussa Sissoko and Steven Bergwijn time to recover but Mourinho said he was unsure of how long it would be before they were able to play competitive football again.

“For them, it’s many, many weeks of injury. And when the injury was arriving at an end, we stopped training,” Mourinho said.

“I don’t know, they don’t know, we have to wait for the right permission for them to train again in groups to see if they can come back to a normal competition level.”

Spurs were eighth in the Premier League standings with 41 points, seven points adrift of fourth, before the season was suspended.

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