Sunday 22 September 2019

Jose Mourinho says he hasn't earned the right to recruit at Chelsea in January

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho will not ask the board for funds to improve his squad in January
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho will not ask the board for funds to improve his squad in January

Jose Mourinho says Chelsea's miserable Barclays Premier League title defence means he has no right to demand transfer activity in January - but he would accept a superstar signing.

Mourinho maintains Chelsea will reach the top four and qualify for the Champions League, which would take an unprecedented run after three wins and seven losses in their opening 12 games.

The woeful start, including three straight losses, has left the champions 16th in the table ahead of Saturday's clash with Norwich, three points clear of the relegation zone and 15 adrift of leaders Manchester City.

Mourinho, who received support from Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo on Friday, said: "I will not ask any change to the board for January.

"I don't need to clean the dressing room, like I heard was written somewhere. And I don't need to ask the club to spend money in January."

Pressed on the matter, Mourinho insisted Chelsea may still be active in the winter transfer market, but not at his behest.

"I'm not saying I won't sign (anyone). I'm saying I won't ask the club to do it," he said.

"I don't have the right to do it, in my opinion. I'd be more than happy to be myself and the squad that I have now. I am happy with my players, I trust the players."

Asked what he meant by not having the "right", Mourinho added: "Because our performance during the season in the Premier League is not good enough.

"If I ask for players, or if the club gives me a handful of players, it's like taking the responsibility (away from) us and saying we need extra to reach our objectives.

"I want to have the responsibility in my hands, I want the players to have the responsibility.

"I want the players to feel that I trust them and that I don't need other players to reach the objectives.

"I think we should go together, me and the players. I hope everybody stays and I hope nobody comes."

Chelsea have been linked with the likes of Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Juventus' Paul Pogba in the past in moves which would take breathtaking transfer sums.

Asked if he would accept the arrival of a superstar, Mourinho said: "Of course, yes, but not because I'm not happy, not because I don't trust my players, not because I think only a superstar will help us to reach our objectives.

"One thing is to look at players, to know the market. I always look at players.

"But, in the last week, if every name connected to us was true we'd have to build another training centre because there are already 126 (players linked)."

Mourinho assessed players during the international break.

"But not because we are looking for players," he said.

"In my case, I'm looking to get the best out of my players."

Mourinho was the subject of the first managerial vote of confidence in Roman Abramovich's 12-year ownership on October 5.

The caveat of the board's support was that results must improve, but Chelsea have won twice in seven games since.

Emenalo reiterated the club's support for Mourinho in interviews on Friday.

"Nothing that went public is something that I didn't know before," added Mourinho, who signed a new contract until June 2019 in August.

"Nobody gives a four-year contract four months ago if they don't trust the person.

"There is trust and there are reasons for that trust. The power is in the hands of the owner and the board.

"It's important for us to go to a good period, because the owner deserves it, the board deserves it, the supporters deserve it so much.

"Even more than them, we deserve it, I deserve it, the players deserve it. It's time also for us to give a positive answer, which I think we are giving, but not in the results."

PA Media

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