Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho says it makes him “uncomfortable” that an Arsenal coach will be working with Wales international Gareth Bale during the international break.
Albert Stuivenberg, who is Mikel Arteta‘s right-hand man at the Gunners, will assist Robert Page for Wales in the absence of Ryan Giggs.
Giggs himself is absent after his arrest on suspicion of assaulting his girlfriend.
The development, though, has meant that Mourinho felt the need to speak out on the shift in Wales’ coaching setup.
Speaking in Friday’s press conference, the Spurs boss questioned how Stuivenberg could perform both roles.
“It’s not Giggs responsible for these matches and I’m sorry about it,” the manager said. “Because for the previous fixtures he called me, we spoke about Ben Davies – not Gareth because Gareth was not there – and we shared opinions on the situation, which is probably not going to happen this time.
“And the fact that one of the coaches is an Arsenal coach does not make me very comfortable. Honestly, it doesn’t make me very comfortable.
“National team matches should have coaches that work exclusively for them, not coaches who work for other clubs.”
Bale only recently returned from injury and has slowly gained fitness. Indeed, the 31-year-old earned another 65-minute stint against Ludogorets on Thursday.
But Mourinho hopes that going on his first international break of the season will not “destroy” his progress.
Mourinho urges Bale caution
“He’s getting better and better and I felt he could play 90 minutes (in Bulgaria),” Mourinho added.
“But it’s not about can or cannot, it’s about managing the situation and keeping him safe. Because he’s a player that needs to be safe, he’s a player that had enough problems in the past.
“He’s working so much and we’re all working so carefully with him that we don’t want to destroy the work everybody is doing for the last couple of months.”
Spurs head into Sunday’s clash in magnificent form, after only one defeat since the opening-day loss to Everton.
That defeat came in the Europa League, meaning Tottenham’s Premier League record remains largely unblemished.