Premier League

Jose Mourinho unhappy with ‘unprofessional’ Tottenham-Fulham postponement


Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho said the handling of his side’s late postponement against Fulham was “unprofessional”.

The match was called off less than three hours before Wednesday’s 6 pm kick-off by the Premier League after an outbreak of coronavirus in the Fulham camp.

Spurs are understood to be unhappy with the lack of clarity over the decision, where they received very little communication from their opposition, and the squad had met at the club’s training ground ready to travel to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Mourinho, who posted his frustration on Instagram on the day of the game, kept his powder largely dry in his press conference to preview the visit of Leeds on Saturday.

“I don’t want to speak too much about it,” he said. “Just to say I felt unprofessional, but that is the way it was.

“We were preparing ourselves for that match and of course we didn’t play and that is disruptive of what is a week of work.

“The training sessions before that of course they would be different if we were going to play that game. So people can think good for you because you didn’t play, good for me if I didn’t play – and I know that I don’t play because then I could have a different cycle in the training sessions.

“But not to play and not to train like we would like in the days before of course doesn’t help.”

The Premier League season has been threatened to be thrown into disarray due to the rising number of coronavirus cases, with Spurs’ match with Fulham one of two called off at short notice this week.

It is unlikely that teams battling it out for the same prizes will ever have played the same number of games for much of the season and Mourinho says the league started in the wrong manner, with Manchester City and Manchester United missing the first round of matches.

“It’s a special season with special circumstances,” he said. “We have to say it’s going to be fair because if not it’s better not be involved.

“I believe that even from before the season started, it started immediately in the wrong way. Because to start the season with two clubs having a match in hand, it’s immediately a wrong start.

I don’t want to speak too much about it. Just to say I felt unprofessional, but that is the way it was.

Jose Mourinho

“The season started in September and only in the last week of December we were informed about when these two matches were going to be played.

“Now it’s about many other matches, or a few more.

“There are lots of things that are not right. But it is what it is, it’s what it’s possible to have. When you say it’s fair or not fair, we have to say it’s fair.”

Spurs, whose title hopes have faltered with a four-game winless run, are unlikely to be doing too much business in the January transfer window.

Mourinho believes it would be unfair of him to ask for money given the current climate.

“I’m not expecting, no. Times are not easy. The club made a big effort in the summer to try and build a good squad.

“Honestly, if something good happened to us, it would be a big surprise for me. I don’t feel the right to ask for something.

“One thing is to analyse, which of course I do, one thing is to analyse and commit to that analysis and to write a report and be committed to that report, which of course I did as I have to be professional.

“Another thing is to demand something which I never do. Another thing is to ask for and I’m not going to ask for anything because I respect the effort the club makes.”

Spurs should have Lucas Moura and Carlos Vinicius back after they missed last week’s game with Wolves. The pair were also due to miss the match with Fulham.

Gareth Bale and Giovani Lo Celso are out with respective calf and hamstring problems.

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