Mourinho hits back at Souness

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Published: Saturday 14th March 2015 by The News Editor

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Jose Mourinho believes Chelsea critic Graeme Souness is “clearly a frustrated man”.

The Blues boss took the opportunity on Friday to respond to those who lambasted Chelsea in the aftermath of Wednesday’s Champions League exit to Paris St Germain on away goals.

Former Liverpool midfielder Souness was among the fiercest critics in his role as a Sky Sports pundit. Using his hands to gesture, Mourinho raised his left hand above his head to illustrate Souness’ high level as a player and whacked his left on a low desk to signify his own career.

When it came to management, the Portuguese’s right hand was raised high and his left, for Souness’ management career, wavered just above the desk.

Mourinho said: “The difference between me and Souness is this – Souness as a player, up there. Jose Mourinho as a player, down here. Jose Mourinho as a manager, up here. Souness as a manager, down there.

“With another difference: I was not a frustrated man because I was not a top player. He is clearly a frustrated man.”

Souness won three European Cups with Liverpool between 1978 and 1984, but his management career peaked at Rangers and he has not been employed in a managerial role since leaving Newcastle in 2006, the last of eight jobs.

Mourinho, who was one of Souness’ successors at Benfica, declined to disclose information garnered on the Scot from the Portuguese club.

He added: “I have lots of respect, in spite of some episodes, for a fantastic player with a fantastic career in a fantastic club with a top generation.”

Souness won the league title five times as a Liverpool player, but his silverware as a manager in England amounted to one FA Cup with the Reds and a League Cup with Blackburn.

Having won the Capital One Cup for a third time earlier this month, Mourinho is bidding for a third Premier League crown with Chelsea, who play Southampton on Sunday.

Despite the elimination to PSG, Mourinho is confident of the Blues’ first championship in five years.

“I have the same belief in these players. Unshakeable,” he said.

“We closed the chapter, but we still have the book to write. We have 11 more matches to finish the book.

“Let’s see if the last page of the book is with the Premier League trophy in our hands.”

Without the distractions of the FA Cup after the loss to Bradford and Europe, it was put to Mourinho that Chelsea have no excuses if they blow their five-point advantage, with a game in hand, over second-placed Manchester City.

“There are always excuses,” added Mourinho, before referring to perceived injustices against his side.

“I have excuses to be only five points ahead, because we should be eight, nine, 10, 11, 12.

“We have 11 matches to play, six at home and five away. Lots of difficult matches against teams who desperately need points to play in the Champions League or to stay in the Premier League. The two extremes.

“But we are also in one extreme: as a team who wants to win the Premier League.

“I think our answer is going to be good. I really believe we are going to win.”

Published: Saturday 14th March 2015 by The News Editor

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