Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has broken his 10-day silence in a tetchy news conference in which he made regular digs at England’s Football Association for its treatment of him.
Mourinho hasn’t spoken in public since last week, when he was fined 25,000 pounds ($38,000) for claiming there has been a media-driven campaign against his team and when his star striker, Diego Costa, was handed a three-match ban for stamping on an opponent.
An unhappy-looking Mourinho chose not to discuss the Costa incident Friday, saying jokingly ”maybe I’m punished to reflect. Maybe they (the FA) can read my reflection and (that) I don’t want.”
Mourinho said new signing Juan Cuadrado was available for Saturday’s match at Aston Villa ”unless the Premier League or the FA say there are some rules to stop him.”
In another gripe at the FA, Mourinho referred to an incident this season when he was pushed by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger in the technical area during a game.
”You know, the only surprise I had in relation to that was to be punished when I was pushed by another manager,” Mourinho said.
”Apart from that I can expect everything.”
Mourinho labelled himself the ”Happy One” when he made his return to Chelsea in the summer of 2013 for a second spell as manager. But his outlook has changed somewhat in recent months, despite his team having led the Premier League from the start of the season.
He has constructed a siege mentality around his squad, perceiving that it is being targeted by referees, authorities and the media.
Mourinho said he was only attending the pre-match news conference to avoid getting another fine.
”You know why I’m here,” the Portuguese coach said, ”so you cannot expect that I’m super happy to be here.”
On his recent silence, he added: ”If you want, you can make a silence very noisy. Depends what you want to do. You could make noise with my silence, because you know the reason for my silence.”
Chelsea holds a five-point lead heading to Villa Park, where central midfielder Cesc Fabregas is fit to play after a hamstring injury. Costa misses out as he serves the second game of his ban.
Mourinho is looking for a first win at Villa Park – one of only two Premier League grounds, along with Newcastle’s St James’ Park, where he is yet to triumph.
Asked the reason for the winless record, his answer summed up his current mood.
”Because,” he replied, ”the opponents score more goals than us and sometimes the same number of goals as us.”