December 7 2013 Latest news:
Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Monday, October 7, 2013
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho admitted Norwich City’s second half surge was not good for his health until the Blues’ produced late fireworks to clinch a 3-1 Premier League win at Carrow Road.
Anthony Pilkington’s 68th minute close-range header to cancel out Oscar’s early opener set up a grandstand finish before Chelsea substitutes Eden Hazard and Willian struck inside a minute in the closing stages to soothe Mourinho’s frayed nerves. The former Inter Milan and Real Madrid chief felt Demba Ba’s miss straight after the interval allowed the home fans to become a major factor.
“You could feel the crowd was waiting for moments of emotion,” said Mourinho. “They were winning a corner and the emotion was coming into the game. They put a long ball in the box to (Ricky) van Wolfswinkel and the noise was up pressing for the second and third man to arrive. It is their style, adapted to the players’ profile. I was waiting for Johan Elmander too. I think in the last 10 or 15 minutes if we were winning Chris (Hughton) would have gone with Elmander and van Wolfswinkel and been more direct. They have this. I don’t have, so I have to go with what I had. It was very British in the sense of the emotion of the crowd.
“I went with Demba instead of Samuel (Eto’o) as the man to be strong on set pieces against their big centre halves and he did his job, but I think he has to score the goal after half-time. It was an easy goal, put the ball in, 2-0, we can all go home and no heart-attack. After that you don’t score, you leave the door open for them and they score and we are in trouble.”
Mourinho revealed it was the ‘smell’ of defeat that forced him into a winning gamble to sink the Canaries with the late double substitution.
“During the game I am not nervous. I have feelings. I smell things, and when (Demba) missed an easy goal after half-time I had a smell that they would score,” said Mourinho. “That is why I had Eden warming up at 1-0 because I smelled that. It was difficult to recover him after injury to play the full 90 minutes but I knew if we needed him he would be in the condition to help us. We could have won or lost it at 1-1 because we, at that moment, we didn’t want a point. If they had scored a second goal, we would probably lose, but we are trying to be top. After a point at Spurs, a point here would have been a bad result for us, so we tried to win it.”
Chris Hughton admitted Norwich’s soft centre again contributed to their downfall as Luis Suarez inspired Liverpool to a 5-1 Premier League win on Wednesday night at Anfield.