Jose Mourinho insists reigning champions Chelsea’s terrible start to the season has made him a better manager.
The Blues are only two points above the Premier League’s relegation zone and will be knocked out of the Champions League at the group stage if they lose to Mourinho’s former club, Porto, at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening.
However the Portuguese is adamant that Chelsea’s poor form is not down to his bad management, as it has only made him stronger.
“It is making me better – I never thought I’d be so strong and so highly motivated,” Mourinho said.
“Another defeat and the next morning I wake up with more desire to go to work. So it has made me know myself better and I have found myself stronger than I thought.
“When you win all the time and always have happiness with results it is a wonderful life. When you have bad results it is more difficult and I have found myself really strong. So it is good experience.”
Former Liverpool hero-turned-pundit Jamie Carragher has accused Chelsea’s players of not working hard enough for the under-pressure manager, citing the fact that Bournemouth covered more ground than the Blues in their recent victory at Stamford Bridge.
But Mourinho says that the evidence actually suggests the players have never worked harder.
“Statistics are statistics, but if you analyse the numbers you can get some good information,” he added,
“Match after match we have beaten Chelsea records of high intensity work. In the last three matches we beat the record three times. So we run and work more than ever.
“Our levels of ball possession are much higher than before. Our chances are higher than ever. But our number of goals is lower than ever. So football people like you are intelligent. You have the numbers, you can draw conclusions.”
One of the main factors in the Blues’ struggle for goals has been the form of Spanish striker Diego Costa, who was recently dropped having scored only four times this campaign.
Costa could be recalled for the visit of Porto, although Mourinho believes his team aren’t being rewarded for their build-up play.
“We are having so many situations where you just need a tap in or one touch and we are not having that, that is for sure,” he said.
“It’s what I am trying all the time. Sometimes collective as a group sometimes with the individuals players that should be in those positions. I feel our work is really good. There is a contradiction between our work and what is happening on the pitch.”