Jose Mourinho expanded the mind games for the Tottenham clash in Chelsea by suggesting that he knows Frank Lampard’s tactics for Saturday’s Premier League game.
Mourinho returns to Stamford Bridge for the first time since they have taken over their rivals, knowing that if Spurs win they will overtake Chelsea in the race for a place in next year’s Champions League.
Lampard was in charge in Derby last season when Leeds was caught spying on their training sessions and Mourinho claimed he knew Chelsea would use three centerbacks – just like in the reverse game in December.
Mourinho returns to Stamford Bridge for the first time since the acquisition of Chelsea’s rivals
“I was told they were back to back five, which they normally do when their results aren’t the best,” he said.
When asked how he knew that, he replied: “In the same way, journalists have a lot of news and you don’t tell the sources.”
To increase the pressure on his former midfielder, Mourinho insisted that Lampard should not change his plans despite the alleged leak.
His comments set fire to a game that could be crucial to decide who finishes in the top four.
The Blues are in pole position, one point ahead of Spurs, despite having won only one league match this year. But after he had not recruited any players last month, Lampard insisted that his side be underdogs in the Champions League qualifying race.
The Spurs boss claimed to know the tactics that Frank Lampard will use during the game
Mourinho rejected that suggestion and said: “Of course Chelsea is currently in fourth place.” He added: “Tottenham, Manchester United, Arsenal, Sheffield United, Wolverhampton, Everton – we are the underdogs. Chelsea has an advantage over all of us. That is obvious. “
Tottenham goes to Stamford Bridge without a recognized striker. Harry Kane (hamstring) and Son Heung-min (broken arm) are not expected to play much this season.
This week Mourinho compared Tottenham’s fate with “going to fight with a gun without bullets,” and since then he has insisted that no other team in Europe be faced with such injury problems.
Lampard did not agree. “I’m not sure if many Premier League teams have sustained our injuries. We had big ones at the start of the season, big ones now in the season. Big, big players for us, “he said. “He has attacking players, let’s do well. Dele Alli, for me, his best season at Tottenham played occasionally with Harry Kane.
“Lucas Moura scored a hat trick last year in the semi-final of the Champions League and is an incredible talent on the ball.”
Lampard now misses N’Golo Kante and Christian Pulisic, while Tammy Abraham and Callum Hudson-Odoi have doubts.
Chelsea will be starless midfielder N’Golo Kante and Christian Pulisic before the game
Tammy Abraham has been back in training and Chelsea is hopeful that he will take action again
Ruben Loftus-Cheek is in the team for the first time this season, while Antonio Rudiger and Reece James have also been fighting for fitness in recent months.
“We all feel the same as managers. When you have injured big players, you know how much you miss them. But Tottenham also has a large team, “Lampard said.
‘I understand his feelings, because you want all your top players to be fit. But it doesn’t make me think they’re weaker, whatever Jose says. I know a hard team is coming. “
Despite his brain games, Mourinho tried to downplay the meaning of his return, suggesting that it was no different than visiting another big side. He rejected suggestions that he likes to be the bad guy and liquidate people.
The Blues won a 2-0 win in the reverse league in December thanks to a Willian double
Mourinho was confronted with hostile receptions during recent visits to Stamford Bridge and the Spurs boss said he expects ‘the usual’ this time. “That’s football,” he said.
“Every time I am approached on the street by fans of all different clubs – not just the clubs I have worked with before – with care, respect, great feelings.”
In 2018, while in charge of Manchester United, he held the Chelsea audience three fingers up, which meant the number of titles he won as Chelsea boss.
‘I have won three Premier Leagues. That’s nothing special, “he said before the game. “I know if I want to go (to Chelsea), I just have to pick up the phone and I will be treated the way I deserve … the way the club respects me and people like me who belong to their past.”
“I don’t have a problem with the club at all.”
Lampard and Mourinho won three titles together during the club’s two spells
Mourinho was confronted with hostile receptions during recent visits to Stamford Bridge with Manchester United