Southgate snipes at Mourinho and has message over Kane fitness


England boss Gareth Southgate had a message for Jose Mourinho at his England squad announcement on Thursday.

Southgate named a 30-man England squad for the upcoming games against Wales, Belgium and Denmark with Kane ready to spearhead the attack.

Responding to Tottenham boss Mourinho’s request that players, notably  Kane, are not overplayed, Southgate said he hoped the situation would work both ways.

Southgate pointed out that Mourinho never calls him, instead he goes to the media with his thoughts.

He said: “Jose was on good form. I heard him. He won’t phone but he is going to stand at the top of Tottenham’s stadium and tell us.

“The season as a whole is a huge challenge for clubs and national teams. We’ve all got to work together on that. It doesn’t help anybody if we’re not joined up on our thinking.

“All Jose needs to do in April and May is make sure he looks after Harry Kane for us, because they’ll be 55 million people relying on that. That obviously works both ways.”

Southgate said he could not promise club managers all players would sit out all three games, but stressed their workload would be managed.



He said: “We are certainly not looking to start players in three games.

“I can’t guarantee no player will play no minute of all three games. You might end up having to put someone on for five minutes and people will say you didn’t do what you said.

“Our aim is to manage the squad. We have got to be responsible. We are conscious of the welfare of the players.”

‘I don’t speak with Gareth or Steve’

Mourinho tried to lean on Southgate over Kane’s game time in England’s upcoming triple bill of fixtures.

Spurs are in the midst of a hectic run of matches, with Thursday’s date with Maccabi Haifa their sixth in 14 days, and Manchester United await on Sunday.

“Three games are obviously too much, especially for my players,” said Mourinho.

“When Kane is fit he should start every game for Tottenham but he didn’t [against Chelsea],” Mourinho said. “So I think this is the point.

“When you have such a player and you want to win every match, you play him, but you just can’t do it. I believe that Gareth [Southgate] and Steve [Holland, the assistant manager] care about the players and I don’t think they want to be connected with something that can be a consequence of this week and the three international matches.

“I don’t speak with Gareth or Steve. I just let them do the job in the way they want to do it with the freedom they deserve. Hopefully Gareth and Steve understand what happened with Tottenham this week and they respect the players. That’s just my hope but I’m not going to call or ask or beg.”