Jose was at his spitfire best in a pre-match press conference, strongly rebuking Scott Parker’s complaints about the Tottenham vs. Fulham match going forward.
Mourinho is never one to mince words, a trait I’m rather fond of. Of course it depends on which side of the fence you sit, as his bellicose rhetoric often infuriates those on the opposing side. But when he’s your manager, it’s absolutely brilliant theatre. And even better, it’s candid, forthright and straight from the heart.
Parker, a former Hotspur and current Fulham manager, was incensed when he heard confirmation of the match against Spurs was set to take place on Wednesday. Given only three days to prepare, Fulham’s manager believes it’s an injustice of the highest order. He said, understandably, that he would have played a different side in his side’s FA Cup victory against on Saturday had he known.
While that’s a fair argument, Jose was right in offering his unadulterated counter offensive. Fulham have already played 10 less matches this season than Spurs, a staggering amount considering we’re not yet at the halfway mark of the campaign. Tottenham have played 30 matches; Fulham just 20.
In his entertaining response to the Fulham manager’s comments, Jose said Parker is “disconnected with the real world.”
Parker would probably retort that Tottenham have a significantly larger squad to choose from and are positioned perfectly to deal with a congested calendar. But the reality is that Fulham haven’t played a Premier League match since Boxing Day, an almost three-week span. On top of that, they’ve had three days to prepare for this evening’s match, one more than Spurs.
With the short hop, skip and jump to north London, it’s not as if Fulham has an arduous journey ahead of them.
These are unprecedented times and Jose is spot on to say Parker is out of touch. Now more than ever, individuals and teams must be adaptable, able to change plans at the drop of a hat. It’s the current world we live in. To have any chance of finishing all the matches this season, teams need to be more malleable and fluid than ever before.
Though I was a big advocate of Parker’s tireless work rate as a player, he needs to stop whining, buck up and get with the program. His words have stirred the fire in Mourinho’s belly, and have thus elevated the excitement prior to an already anticipated London derby.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see the animosity spill over onto the pitch this evening, hoping Spurs can channel their inner fury and keep Fulham where they belong, ensnared in the drop zone.