Answering questions from fans, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho talks Cesar Azpilicueta's impact, developing players in the Uefa Youth League and what motivates him.
‘I motivate myself’ says Jose Mourinho, answering fan questions in Q&A
Jose Mourinho, the Chelsea manager, answered fans questions in a recent question and answer session for the club’s magazine, in which Nemanja Matic also talks about his season. Here are some of his answers
After starting the season on the bench, Cesar Azpilicueta has become a regular starter in recent months. What has impressed you most about him?
Cesar is an example of a player who works hard, every day, and who gives everything for the team. He trains hard, he proves himself in every game and he plays where the team needs him. He has the mentality that the team comes first, and this is very, very important because it pushes the rest of his team mates to do the same. It is this kind of player who makes a squad strong and I think you can see from his performance this season that Azpi is this kind of player.
How important is the Uefa Youth League for Chelsea’s young players, who will want to play in the first team one day?
I think the top clubs understand the importance of European competition now and they want their young players to experience this. For our 17, 18 and 19-year-old players to be competing with Milan, Ajax or Barcelona is fantastic for their development – they play against different styles, different attitudes and they learn what it will be like if, one day, they come to play for the first team in big European games. Last year, we reached the final of the NextGen Series and this year our Under 19s have been strong again in the first Uefa Youth League – I think this can only be good for them and – I hope – good for the future of Chelsea.
Winning is extra special to the fans when victory comes from a last-minute goal, as against Everton last month. Is it the same for you in the dugout?
It’s a good feeling, of course, but when this happens, I am also pleased with the desire of my players to play until the final whistle. We have been on the other side of this, when you concede a late goal, but for sure we have the positive outcome more often because we have a squad who hates to lose, who hates not to win, and who gives everything to end every game with a positive feeling.
They want to feel the emotion of winning every time they go to play and that is what pleases me most about games like the Everton one.
To what extent do the players participate in tactical decisions and what is the importance of incorporating players’ tactical suggestions into the overall plan to face an opponent?
The players don’t participate in the decision-making but it is important for them to communicate in the tactical work we do as a group before we face any opponent.
Who motivates the motivator?
I motivate myself. My motivation is to do my job well, to prepare my team for each game the best I can. If I needed motivation, I would not be in this job. Your focus comes from the drive that you need to succeed – it is the same for a team and an individual. We are always motivated.
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