Tottenham stars have Mauricio Pochettino complaints over Jose Mourinho amid sack pressure
Tottenham: Mourinho denies team are in crisis
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Members of Tottenham’s first-team squad have a series of complaints about manager Jose Mourinho, believing his training methods to be too heavily focused on their opposition, lacking in attacking instruction and also not intense enough all compared to life under predecessor Mauricio Pochettino.
Mourinho is facing increasing pressure over his future at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium with Spurs in miserable form in the Premier League.
Having previously been tipped as a title contender in December, Spurs now find themselves battling to play European football next season.
The north London club sit ninth in the league and nine points off of fourth-placed West Ham albeit having played one game less.
But Spurs have lost five of their last six top-flight games to slide down the table, going down 2-1 to the Hammers at the London Stadium at the weekend. They have picked up just 12 points from their last 12 league games.
And amid growing calls for Mourinho to be axed by chairman Daniel Levy, The Athletic say a section of the Spurs dressing room are fed up of the manager’s methods in training.
The Portuguese said at the weekend: “Sometimes results are a consequence of multiple suggestions. Mine, and my coaching staff’s methods, are second to nobody in the world.”
But some of his players disagree and believe training is too defensively focused and centres heavily on how the opposition will play, rather than focusing on their own strengths.
The Athletic say multiple dressing room sources have indicated that some players – though not the entire squad – are increasingly unhappy about Mourinho’s approach.
The former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United tactician has had 15 months in charge since replacing Pochettino.
And players are said to now be looking fondly towards the days under the Argentine, now at Paris Saint-Germain, despite their struggles in the final months of his tenure.
To execute his demanding style, Pochettino implemented double sessions at times and while it was not popular then, some Spurs players now feel they are not worked hard enough in training.
In addition, some senior figures in Spurs’ squad feel that they do not work on attacking patterns and ideas in training enough, with it claimed they even rely on techniques learned under Pochettino when in matches.
RB Leipzig’s Julian Nagelsmann is thought to be Tottenham’s top target if they do part ways with Mourinho in the near future, while Leicester’s Brendan Rodgers is also admired.
Spurs will have to pay out around £30m if Levy decides enough is enough with the current boss due to clauses in his contract.
The Londoners return to action against Wolfsberger in the Europa League on Thursday but already have one foot in the last 16 after a 4-1 first leg win.
After that, Spurs take on Burnley at home in the Premier League on Sunday before facing relegation-battling Fulham the following Thursday.
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The results in those matches could be pivotal to Mourinho’s future and he will be desperate for six points to lift some gloom.
Discussing Mourinho’s future with Football Insider, ex-England and Manchester City defender Danny Mills said he believes the 58-year-old will get until the Carabao Cup final.
Spurs face Manchester City at Wembley on April 25 as they look to win their first piece of silverware since 2008.
“It comes down to trophies,” Mills said. “Could Tottenham win the Europa League? Quite possibly with the players that they have. Could they beat Man City in that one-off game? It’s difficult, but yes they could.
“Mourinho could come away with two trophies and a Champions League place because of the Europa League. That’s unbelievably successful in terms of what Tottenham do.
“While they’re still in the Europa League, nothing is going to happen between now and the end of the season.
“If they end up finishing eighth and they don’t win anything then questions will be asked.
“There’s a good chance that they could win a cup or a couple and suddenly that puts Tottenham into a whole new level again.
“The Carabao Cup could well be enough, if they finish in the top six, to keep him there another year and they can build on that.
“I still believe he’s a great coach and a great manager but I’m not employing him. If you give him the tools to do the job properly, give him some money to spend to get some real good defenders in, then Tottenham could be a real proposition next season.”
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