Scott Parker and Jose Mourinho are on a collision course after the Tottenham manager said he had no sympathy for his counterpart following Fulham’s late rearranged clash at Spurs.
Tottenham should have travelled to Aston Villa on Wednesday but Dean Smith’s squad have been struck down by a Covid outbreak which forced them to close the training ground.
Now Fulham have stepped in late on to face Spurs at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Wednesday, giving them just 48 hours notice ahead of the rearranged kick-off.
Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham side host Fulham in their rearranged league match on Wednesday
Scott Parker is furious his Fulham side were given such short notice for the rescheduled fixture
The two teams were meant to meet on December 30 in north London but that was originally called off after an outbreak of the virus among Scott Parker’s camp.
Parker, whose Fulham side were next set to take on Chelsea on Friday evening, was only told on Monday morning that they would now be facing Tottenham on Wednesday.
And he labelled the decision to notify Fulham of the rearranged fixture at such late notice as ‘scandalous’.
Parker said in his pre-match press conference on Tuesday: ‘The possibility of playing Spurs on Wednesday came on Saturday.
‘We didn’t think that was realistic and we were informed Monday morning at 9.30. To confirm that on Monday morning is scandalous…’
He added: ‘It’s not about the fixture. The fixture is – to be honest with you – that’s fine I accept that we have to play but it’s the notice.
‘Maybe people in these places don’t understand how you manage teams and how you manage players but you’re constantly working out well in advance, and the decisions that I would have made or we would have made – whether that’s against QPR or players that are just coming back.’
Fulham were next set to take on Chelsea on Friday, but they now face Spurs two days earlier
But Mourinho has no sympathy whatsoever for his ex-Chelsea player and Fulham, highlighting his team’s own uncertainty surrounding the original match.
After being asked on Tuesday whether the rescheduling of the fixture was unfair on Fulham, Mourinho responded: ‘Are you serious?
‘I had the news I was not going to play them two hours before the game started.’
But despite sharing his anger at those claims, Mourinho did insist the decision to hastily rearrange the schedule and enable Tottenham to face Fulham at short notice is a ‘positive solution’ to the Premier League’s looming fixture crisis.
‘The biggest impact is to have matches postponed,’ said Mourinho. ‘That is the biggest impact. The changing of the order of the matches, the impact is minimal I would say.
‘In the end you have to play 19 matches at home and 19 away, and two matches against every team. So if it is to help the Premier League, it’s a solution we all have to accept as a positive solution.’
Mourinho had initially branded the late postponement of Tottenham’s clash with Fulham ‘unprofessional’ and likened the Premier League’s handling of the situation to his experience managing in kids’ football.
Mourinho shared a video of his Spurs squad waiting in the stadium for Fulham on December 30
Mourinho mocked the Premier League and its ‘best league in the world’ tag in Instagram post
Spurs were angered by the timing of the decision and lack of information they received before the announcement that the game was off less than four hours before kick-off.
Mourinho mocked the Premier League’s status as the best league in the world in a social media post while his players waited at Spurs’ training ground for news.
Fulham, having played QPR in the FA Cup on Saturday, expected to have a clear week ahead of their fixture against Chelsea, which has been put back from Friday to Saturday to give them more recovery time.
Spurs already face a backlog of fixtures because of their progress in all cup competitions.
Meanwhile, Mourinho believes the message will get through to players about taking more care with social distancing around the matches, after criticism followed the FA Cup third round ties.
‘I don’t believe that at Premier League level in any team’s dressing rooms we have this kind of celebrations just by winning three points in the Premier League,’ said the Spurs boss.
Mourinho admitted goal celebrations at Premier League level have been toned down by VAR
‘When you go down, to the FA Cup, to giant killings, to incredible moments for some clubs and players’ careers that can happen. Because it’s the wild emotion of football that can push to that.
‘I think now they will not repeat that. I think now with the exposure and the comments and the explanation of the risks, I think now the boys even with crazy happiness of a big day for them, they will control [themselves].’
Mourinho also said the goal celebrations at Premier League level had already been muted by the presence of VAR.
‘I don’t even celebrate goals myself almost,’ he said. ‘Because of the VAR, I adapt and I went in a certain direction to controlling emotions and I believe the players can do a little bit of the same.
‘The reality is that the big exposure was some celebrations after matches in the dressing room. And in the normal situation, that’s the beauty of football, of a small team beating the giant. But in this moment, they have to control and adapt.’
Read More: https://www.kbcchannel.tv | For More Sports | Visit Our Facebook & Twitter @kbcchanneltv | Making The Invisible, Visible