Special season for Chelsea and the special one
Blues boss Jose Mourinho believes a first defeat wouldn’t dampen squad’s belief
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho believes his side are enjoying a “perfect season” and even a first defeat against Tottenham Hotspur tomorrow nightwouldn’t dampen the belief in his squad
The runaway leaders play Tottenham on Wednesday night seeking to consolidate their advantage at the top of the Barclays Premier League, having failed to score for the first time this term at Sunderland last Saturday.
Despite opening the season with a 20-match unbeaten run, Mourinho thinks his side should be in buoyant mood even when the defeat he believes is inevitable happens.
“What do you want the team to do or to feel when a team is doing a perfect season?” Mourinho said.
“Top of the league in the Premier League. Top of the group in the Champions League. Quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup. Not losing one match for four months.
“The team has to feel very very well. And, when the defeat arrives, I think we have to feel exactly in the same way.
“We are doing things very, very well and it’s not a bad result, when the bad result arrives, that is going to change our self-belief, our self-esteem.”
For Spurs to end the Blues’ unbeaten streak, they must win at Stamford Bridge for the first time since February 1990, when Gary Lineker scored the winning goal.
“So tomorrow he can’t,” added Mourinho, who is not interested in the record or in appraising Tottenham this season.
“I don’t think it’s important. I don’t even speak with the players about it, was not important.
“I don’t have to comment on (Spurs), just a difficult team that we have to play against. That’s the only thing that we have to think, that it’s a difficult match and to be ready for it. Nothing else.”
Chelsea will be without striker Diego Costa, who serves a one-game ban after being shown his fifth yellow card of the season in last Saturday’s goalless draw at Sunderland.
“We don’t speak about Diego,” Mourinho said.
“Forget Diego, we trust the other two and we go with the other two.”
At the other end of his team, in defence, John Terry has enjoyed another impressive campaign.
The captain is under contract until the end of the season, but Mourinho would not entertain discussion over his future.
“It’s not time to speak about it,” Mourinho said.
“But he knows what I think, he knows what I feel, the board also knows. And we don’t feel the need to share with you (the media).”
Terry signed a new contract less than 48 hours after the 2013-14 season closed in May, but Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole departed after long spells at Stamford Bridge.
Mourinho was not prepared to speak about Chelsea’s record goalscorer Lampard, who is thriving at Manchester City on loan from New York City FC and could yet stay in England longer.
“I don’t speak about former players that play in clubs with the same objectives as we have,” he added.
“When I speak about former players I speak about players who have finished their careers, like William Gallas, not Frank.
“Frank, at this moment, plays against us. I don’t want to speak about it.”