He’s now the self-appointed general in a war against refs and, at times, the media, but he insists he does not have the artillery to stand a chance.
With stars of last season like Nemanja Matic and Cesc Fabregas rooted to the subs’ bench for the start of Saturday’s match, Diego Costa a suspension waiting to happen — with his latest show of petulance a kick aimed at Martin Skrtel — and summer loan signing Radamel Falcao all contributing next to nothing in the comprehensive defeat, it was left to the Portuguese to again take to the trenches and manufacture a siege mentality.
The multilinguist could have eloquently contributed the defeat to Liverpool’s ability to switch from a fruitless possession game to a more direct brand of goal- getting, or to his side being exhausted from their Tuesday night Capital One Cup defeat after 180 minutes and a penalty shoot-out to Stoke.
Instead, he painted a picture of himself as a war hero with all the answers but without the humility to share them.
“I can’t express my feelings in any way at all,” Mourinho said after Ramires’ opener was cancelled out and eventually overcome by a Philippe Coutinho brace and a late Christian Benteke strike.
“The fight goes on, but sometimes there are fights that are very impossible to win. You go to a fight with different ammunition. There are some fights you just cannot win.
“I can play against any team, I can play against any manager. My team can play against any team and win or lose, but more than this is difficult.” It should have been so different for Chelsea.
The positive news at the start of the week that dedicated midfielder Ramires had penned a new contract taking his stay at Stamford Bridge until at least 2019 was celebrated with a fine headed goal after just four minutes.
But the half turned sour for the home side two minutes and 35 seconds into the two minutes of injury time referee Mark Clattenburg had allotted. Coutinho, probably frustrated by his sides insistence on whipping early crosses into a Benteke-shaped void in the Chelsea box – with the hulking Belgian starting on the bench – took matters into his own hands and meandered through the middle of the park before curling the ball home.
The Brazilian then put his side ahead in the second-half with a deflected shot and Benteke completed the embarrassment with seven minutes left. The former Aston Villa man gave John Terry and Gary Cahill ample chance to smother him but instead backed off and encouraged the striker to power home a third nail in what could prove to be Mourinho’s coffin.
The Scrutinised One was anything but magnanimous in defeat.“You are all intelligent guys,” he told the media who were puzzled as to who he was accusing of not respecting his side after the game and were deemed not worthy of an answer. If you want to write it, you write it. If you don’t want, you don’t want. Next press conference I will bring you nice glasses. Maybe you’ll see the game in a better way. Or I’ll give you some five percent of personality so you can say what you see and you are not afraid to say it.”
Perhaps personality will play an important part in Mourinho’s future. Victorious manager Jurgen Klopp compared his vanquished counterpart’s struggles with the dip in form he struggled with atBorussia Dortmund.
“Yes I have sympathy for him but not at the moment,” Klopp said. “It’s normal, he’s a great coach, one of the best but things like this happen. I had a similar situation in Dortmund last year.”
It’s now three draws and two wins in all competitions since the German took over from Brendan Rodgers at Anfield mid-October. With the likes of Leicester, West Ham and Crystal Palace making up an unfamiliar looking top end of the table, talk of a title charge started on Saturday only for Klopp to dismiss it.
“Oh please, are you crazy? I was hoping I didn’t understand the question. I’ve only been here for three weeks,” he said at the suggestion his side could compete for the Premier League crown Chelsea seem desperate to surrender.
“Everyone is supposed to win the league and only one person can. We have many injuries. We don’t think about winning the league, we think about doing better.”
Begovic 6; Zouma 5, Cahill 6, Terry 5, Azpilicueta 6 (Falcao 75, 5); Ramires 7, Mikel 6 (Fabregas 69, 6), Willian 7; Oscar 6, Hazard 5 (Kenedy 59, 5), Costa 5.
Baba, Remy, Matic, Amelia Scorer: Ramires 4 Booked: Mikel.
Mignolet 6; Clyne 7, Skrtel 7, Sakho 7, Moreno 6; Can 7, Lucas 7, Milner 6 (Benteke 64, 7); Lallana 7 (Lovren 90 3), Coutinho 8, Firmino 7 (Ibe 75, 6).
Allen, Bogdan, Teixeira, Randall Scorers: Coutinho 45+3, 74, Benteke 83 Booked: Coutinho, Lucas, Can, Benteke.