- Premier League
Liverpool have a perfect run-in, says Mourinho
Jose Mourinho says he is not surprised by Liverpool's sensational progress in this title race, because Brendan Rodgers's side have had the "perfect" conditions to take advantage.
Mourinho pointed to participation in European football as the reason why his side's run-in remains the most difficult, despite a sequence against notionally lesser sides.
"When you have six days a week to prepare a match, six days a week to train, maybe twice a day, you have conditions to improve that nobody else has," Mourinho said of Liverpool. "At the same time, players have no accumulation of fatigue.
£300m for Chelsea duo?
- Jose Mourinho insists he is not worried about Paris Saint-Germain targeting Eden Hazard and Oscar, but admitted Chelsea would be forced to consider a sale if the Ligue 1 big spenders were to offer around £300 million for the pair.
- Chelsea face PSG in the quarter-finals of the Champions League and, with both Lucas Moura and Yohan Cabaye having recently willed the Chelsea pair to join them at the Parc des Princes, Mourinho believes it would take an astronomical offer to get his attention.
- "No. It's not irritating. No problem," Mourinho said. "If there is Financial Fair Play, they don't have money to buy them. If there is no Financial Fair Play and they threw something crazy, £300million for both, I think Chelsea has to think about it."
- Mourinho has reserved some praise for PSG, namely their star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who the Portuguese admitted was one of the best players he had coached in his managerial career.
"You can see clearly some of their players they are not paying the consequences of over-time and accumulation, you see freshness, you see players with a certain age they don't need to rest matches because they rest during the week, so the season for them is a perfect season to do what they are doing."
Mourinho insists that Chelsea themselves have a less than perfect run-in, due to the complications of continental football. Other than that, six of their seven remaining fixtures come against teams currently in the bottom half of the table.
"[It's] the most difficult, because we play Champions League, they [Liverpool and Manchester City] don't," Mourinho said.
"We have to play matches with two or three days in between, we have to change our focus from the Premier League to the Champions League, go back to the Premier League, go back to the Champions League, play two big matches against Paris.
"Liverpool, they keep going in their perfect season. We have more matches than them, we have to play Champions League. We have no time to prepare matches like they have. I think it's a big advantage; an advantage that City has since now, an advantage Liverpool has since the beginning of season."
Having issued yet another verbal barb towards rival Arsene Wenger, in which he continued his criticism of the Frenchman specialising in failure, Mourinho has refused to rule Arsenal out of the title race despite last week's 6-0 at Stamford Bridge.
"Mathematically, no. Mathematically, it's open for them. It's more difficult because they are a few points behind the other three teams but obviously possible."