x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Mourinho unable to speak easy

Jose Mourinho ends a six-day media boycott after his Inter Milan side lost 1-0 at Sampdoria, and with it top spot of Serie A, but made it clear he was doing so begrudgingly.

Inter coach Jose Mourinho leaves the pitch at Marassi stadium in Genoa after defeat to Sampdoria.
Inter coach Jose Mourinho leaves the pitch at Marassi stadium in Genoa after defeat to Sampdoria.

Jose Mourinho ended a six-day media boycott after his Inter Milan side lost 1-0 at Sampdoria, and with it top spot of Serie A, on Saturday but made it clear he was doing so begrudgingly. The Portuguese manager had skipped news conferences and interviews after being sent to the stands in the Serie A champions' 2-1 win at Cagliari last weekend.

"I'm not continuing the silence because the club asked me because of contracts with you," Mourinho told Sky television. "If it were up to me the silence would continue." The former Porto and Chelsea boss, who returned to the dugout after being suspended for Wednesday's 3-1 win over Napoli, would not give a reason for the blackout. However he has frequently complained about the grilling he is subjected to during post-match interviews in Italy.

Mourinho gave curt responses to several questions. When asked about the formation he used, he replied: "I'm the coach. I decide and I don't have to explain." In one of the few full answers he gave, Mourinho blamed injuries for a defeat that left his side two points behind Sampdoria. "A team that loses [Thiago] Motta and [Wesley] Sneijder loses something in midfield," he said. For Samp, it was a sign that they can compete with the big teams and continued their impressive start to the season. They went top after beating the defending champions thanks to Giampaolo Pazzini's third goal of the campaign in the 72nd minute and have now won five of their six games.

"It was a very important goal, here, with the stadium sold out, we played with Inter, which was ahead of us," said Pazzini. "We needed to have an excellent performance to overtake them at the top of the table and we did, and it makes this a great evening. We did the same as we did for all five matches so far. We lost to Fiorentina in midweek, but we have the strength to pick ourselves up and we played a great game. Although we were not brilliant, we showed great personality against a great team. So surely the compliments is deserved by all. It is a great night, a great emotion."

Davide Santon, the young Inter fullback, slipped in his area, allowing Daniele Mannini to take the loose ball and cross for Pazzini to score past Julio Cesar. "Santon made a mistake, but any player can make a mistake." Mourinho said. "Never in my career have I had a player who hasn't made a mistake." Juventus missed the chance to overtake Sampdoria at the summit of Serie A when they were held 1-1 at home by Bologna yesterday.

Brazilian forward Adailton sidefooted home a cross from the left deep into injury time to deny the Turin side, who had ridden their luck after French forward David Trezeguet prodded them in front from close range on 24 minutes. Juve are second, a point behind Sampdoria. * Reuters