Jose Mourinho claimed Tottenham’s 1-0 defeat to RB Leipzig was like ‘going into battle with a gun without bullets’ during a prickly interview on BT Sport.
Spurs were outclassed by their German opponents in the first leg of their last-16 tie and were made to pay in the second-half when Timo Werner fired home from the spot after Ben Davies’ clumsy challenge.
The north London club were without several key players for the match, including their most regular source of goals Heung-min Son and Harry Kane, who could both miss the remainder of the season. And Mourinho took issue with suggestions that bringing on Erik Lamela and Tanguy Ndombele brought out the ‘real Spurs’, insisting he picked the only players available to him.
In a four-minute rant, the Portuguese told BT Sport: “Come on, what do you mean by the real Spurs?
“Let’s be loyal to the boys and tell that they did everything they could do. Lamela, you know how many training sessions he made with the team? Zero.
“Direct from injury to recovering on the pitch with the physios, direct to 20 minutes of a game of the Champions League. That is our team.”
He added: “This is our situation. It’s like going to a fight with a gun without bullets.
“What I am worried with is not the 1-0, because the 1-0 is an open result. 1-0 we can perfectly go there and win the tie.
“What worries me is that these are our players for the next I don’t know how many matches. We have to play in two days again. We could see Lucas absolutely dead, Bergwijn absolutely dead, Lo Celso dead.
“So we can look at it in the two perspectives. One perspective is that I am so proud of them and they did absolutely fantastic.
“Another perspective is, that’s our situation… we are really in trouble.
“If this was for this game I would say ‘okay no problem, 1-0 everything is open’, what worries me is that we have Premier League and FA Cup to play too.
“Don’t tell me that Lamela and Ndombele should start the game because they could not start the game. So these guys… fantastic.
“I cannot be happier to have guys like them with the limitations we have.”
Mourinho’s side face a quick turnaround for their top-four six-pointer against Chelsea on Saturday lunchtime, which was moved for T.V purposes.
And the Spurs boss couldn’t resist a thinly veiled dig at the broadcaster during his interview.
He continued: “Here we go and Chelsea drinking sparkling water with lemon watching the game on TV and Saturday morning, thank you very much for the choice Saturday morning we are there again.”