Tuesday 25 October 2016

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho hails Crystal Palace after 2-1 home defeat

Published 29/08/2015 | 19:14

Jose Mourinho's Chelsea have only won four points from their opening four Premier League games
Jose Mourinho's Chelsea have only won four points from their opening four Premier League games

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho paid tribute to Crystal Palace, but lamented his own side's failings and the lack of a penalty award after a second loss in 100 Premier League home games.

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Chelsea secured the title with a 1-0 defeat of Palace on May 3, but the Eagles were triumphant on this occasion, stunning the hosts just when they thought Radamel Falcao had got them back into the game with his first goal for the Blues.

Joel Ward popped up to restore the lead, after Bakary Sako's opener, as Palace earned a 2-1 win, their first at Stamford Bridge in 33 years.

Mourinho was unhappy with the first-half tussle which saw Kurt Zouma's shirt tugged by Connor Wickham, but he insisted Palace deserved credit for their performance.

"The first thought is to Palace," Mourinho said.

"They come with everything. They were lucky but they deserve the luck.

"My team, I think we deserved more. I don't want to say we deserved to win, because it's not true.

"The referee did a big mistake. Clear penalty with the result 0-0 and obviously with influence in the result.

"The one with Zouma that I watch at half-time on television. It was a clear penalty.

"(But) I prefer to go in this order, when I say Crystal Palace first."

Chelsea are eight points adrift after four points from four games.

Mourinho added: "We have eight points less than the leader and seven and six and five from others. In another league I would say game over.

"In the Premier League I don't say game over because last season we had seven points to the second and in one month we lost the seven points. On January 1 we were on the same points as the second.

"This is the Premier League and I think it's getting more difficult than before.

"The reality is that we had a bad start. Four points in four matches is a very bad start."

The Blues were unable to add to Mourinho's record of 76 wins in the previous 99 home games as the impressive Palace emulated Sunderland's April 2014 success.

"I'm not happy," Mourinho said.

"I cannot say that I had 11 players performing at the same time.

"Two or three of them their individual performance was far from good.

"I blame myself for not changing one of them. I kept him in the game for 90 minutes.

"When I made the third change I realise I needed a fourth and I don't have a fourth."

Mourinho declined to reveal the name of the fourth player.

Branislav Ivanovic's performances have been placed under scrutiny, but Mourinho would not comment on the right-back's display.

"I'm not going to analyse individual form, individual performances," he added.

"If a player is not performing there are two ways of looking at it. One way is that I trust so much the player that I'm going to wait for the improvement.

"Or even trusting the players arrives a moment where you think I have to change. I can go both ways."

Their next match is at Everton on September 12 and it remains to be seen which Blue shirt John Stones will be in or whether Chelsea will be reinforced by further arrivals by Tuesday's 6pm deadline.

"We have to do better. Me and the players, we have to do better," Mourinho added.

Palace had confidence coming to Stamford Bridge.

"There was a belief in us today," boss Alan Pardew said.

"It's difficult to try to overcome the quality of not just the team, but the manager here. We did it.

"You can nick a win here, you can park the bus or whatever you want to call it.

"I don't think we did that today. We were on the front foot and tried to hurt Chelsea as often as we could."

Palace have now won eight of their 10 away matches in the league under Pardew, who has three victories against Mourinho in the last two seasons, a run he attributed to "a bit of luck".

"I'd have to say as Crystal Palace manager, this was the best performance of the team," Pardew added.

"Not because of the victory, but the manner and the way we played. We looked a good team today."

Press Association

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