Tottenham players reportedly remain unimpressed with Jose Mourinho after the coach refused to clarify his comments surrounding Toby Alderweireld.
Mourinho’s future at Tottennham remains under intense scrutiny following a topsy-turvy season. After 12 games, Spurs topped the Premier League table, before a dire run of form saw them drop into mid-table. Their season hit a new nadir after an embarrassing Europa League exit. However, they could yet end their wait for a trophy in the Carabao Cup final where they face Manchester City.
Ending their trophy drought and a top-four finish would silence those critics somewhat. However, the heat appears to be back on after a frustrating 2-2 draw at Newcastle on Sunday. Those dropping of two points saw Mourinho cast more blame in the direction of his players.
At the centre of Mourinho’s comments were his explanation about Alderweireld’s absence. The Belgian was overlooked for the game, with Mourinho citing his late return from international duty as the reason for his omission. Yet those comments did not go down well with Tottenham’s squad, according to reports.
Confusion over the player was more compounded by photos of the player reportedly training with the squad prior to the game.
Now Mourinho has refused to explain his comments last weekend regarding Alderweireld. Furthermore, he’s accused the media of “playing games” over the situation.
Asked to explain his comments about Alderweireld, Mourinho claimed he had no case to answer and suggested the media was guilty of sensationalism.
“I can’t clarify and I can’t clarify because you [the media] spoke about it for the whole week,” he said.
“You play the game, enjoy the game during the whole week and now I want to enjoy my game at one o’clock.
“Now I’m here to answer to the question that you already answered for the whole week. There is nothing for me to clarify. If I have to clarify, I clarify with my people and not with the people who know everything and wrote and spoke and sold papers and with audiences on radios and TVs.
“You don’t even pay me a percentage, so I’m not going to play the game. Let me play [my game], I’ve been working in the gym for two weeks for this game and now I’m going to arrive late.”
Mourinho won’t speak about Tottenham reaction
Mourinho was also asked how his players had responded to his criticism following the draw at St James’ Park.
That’s after the Independent reports the Tottenham squad remain angered at Mourinho for his comments after the 2-2 draw.
Mourinho though again dug his heels in and refused to answer the question.
“I’m not going to answer to your question because for the whole week, everybody spoke about it, everybody took for granted what they were writing, what they were saying,” Mourinho added.
“So I don’t feel comfortable to come five or six days later to make comments about something people write and speak like if they know everything.
“I don’t think I want to go in that direction. I’d prefer to play or to let you play your game, I mean the media in general. I let you play the game we’ve had during the week. But I just want to play our game at 1pm.
“I don’t want to play that game.”