Anorak

Anorak | Insult And Injury

Insult And Injury

by | 4th, October 2004

‘AFTER yesterday’s 1-0 win over a directionless Liverpool, Chelsea’s credentials as genuine title challengers are beyond doubt.

‘I’ll leave the price tag on so you can always get a refund if it doesn’t fit’

What is less clear is the mental state of their manager, Jose Mourinho.

What at first glance looked gregarious and cocksure, now seems a little unbalanced and highly strung, as the Telegraph leads with how the Portuguese coach viewed Joe Cole’s match-winning performance.

In “Bubbling Cole is brought to book”, we learn how the Chelsea No. 10, and the game’s solitary goalscorer, was knocked off Cloud Nine by his manager’s comments that he “still has a lot to learn”.

“He has two faces,” says Mourinho. “One is beautiful when he attacks with the ball…the other face is not so good, defensively, and I don’t like it much.”

Mourinho is clearly quotable. But he speaks so directly that you can’t help but think that should things not pan out for him at Chelsea, he’ll begin alienating his players and just about everyone else.

You can excuse much of Mourinho’s arrogance on his position as a winner – if that success becomes a fading memory, he will sound increasingly ridiculous.

Another of his post-match views appears in the Sun, where he says that Chelsea are the best English team in Europe.

“But I want all English teams to get through in Europe,” says he, “play lots of games, get tired and pick up a lot of little injuries.”

How very gracious of him to say that they should be only little injuries. His hope is not for broken legs, rather fractures, bad bruising and some tendon damage.

But while Mourinho treads a fine line, and Chelsea turn into George Graham’s Arsenal, the Independent has been casting an eye on Michael Owen’s most recent performance in Madrid.

That we should care what the England striker is getting up to in Spain owes much to his new club’s location in what makes for a nice weekend break for Wapping’s finest.

Indeed, there was little to see of the man himself who played for just 52 minutes in Real’s home defeat to Deportivo La Coruna and missed two decent chances to score his first goal for the club.

The result of Owen’s dip in form is, according to the Guardian, the distinct possibility that he will soon see his England place go to Jermain Defoe.

But that would mean a lack of experience alongside the young Rooney. And one less reason to send hacks on jollies to sunny Madrid.

For which reason, the paper says that Owen remains a class act. An economy class act, but class, nonetheless…’



Posted: 4th, October 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink