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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 28 February 2021

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho: 'My methods still second to none'

Defeat to West Ham was Spurs' fifth in last six Premier League games

Jose Mourinho insists his coaching techniques "are second to nobody in the world" despite his Tottenham side suffering a fifth defeat in six Premier League games on Sunday.

Tottenham's dismal run of form under the Portuguese hit a new low with a 2-1 defeat at West Ham United, leaving Spurs nine points off the top four, leaving the Europa League as their most likely avenue of a Champions League return next season.

The manner of some of those defeats have left Spurs fans frustrated, with speculation mounting that Mourinho faces the sack. However, reports in the British media speculated that it would cost Spurs around £30 million in compensation to terminate Mourinho's contract that runs until the summer of 2023, something chairman Daniel Levy is unlikely to countenance.

Spurs' alarming dip contrasts markedly from their form at the end of 2020. Mourinho's side were top of the table in mid-December, but since then they have won just three of 13 games, while the team's style of play has also been criticised as has Mourinho's handling of star players Dele Alli and Gareth Bale.

After being sacked in his second spell at Chelsea, then dismissed following a difficult stint with Manchester United, Mourinho's critics claim he is past his best.

The two-time Champions League winner's conservative tactics are often accused of being out-dated, but he was bullish when asked if he questioned his methods amid the poor run of form.

"No, not at all. Not at all. Zero," Mourinho said. "Because sometimes the results are the consequence of multiple situations in football and mine and my coaching staff's methods are second to nobody in the world."

Tottenham's current run of form is far worse than the results which saw Mauricio Pochettino sacked in 2019, with Mourinho handed the reins on one of the most lucrative contracts in the Premier League.

West Ham v Spurs player ratings

The Portuguese has earned 81 points after 50 league matches in charge of the London club, the lowest total at this stage in any managerial stint.

In sharp contrast, he had 126 points at the same point of his first spell in charge of Chelsea.

But Mourinho is adamant Tottenham, who are ninth in the Premier League and will contest the Carabao Cup final in April and are almost guaranteed to reach the Europa League quarter-finals, are not a club in crisis.

"I don't know what you mean by crisis," he said. "If crisis is frustration and sadness in the dressing room, I'd say so because nobody is happy and we all showed that in this game.

"When a team fights the way the team did until the last second, trying to get a different result, it's never a group crisis, because groups are in crisis when you're not together in the search for better results than you have.

"So I wouldn't say crisis, I would say a bad, a really bad run of results. That is obvious. We're losing too many matches."

Updated: February 22, 2021 03:53 PM

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