Jose Mourinho says he is delighted Tottenham have climbed from 14th in the league when he took over as manager to finish in sixth with a Europa League place. Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho is keen to get his side back “where we belong” after they sealed Europa League qualification with a 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace.
Spurs were 14th when the Portuguese took over in November but he has steered them to sixth place after they finished above Wolves on goal difference. It was not done in style after a nervy draw on Sunday at Selhurst Park, where Harry Kane’s goal was cancelled out by Jeffrey Schlupp, with Mourinho admitting he was “ultra pragmatic” after he found out Wolves were losing at Chelsea. Mourinho has promised to embrace the Europa League next season, after four years in the Champions League for the club, while looking to improve on their Premier League form. He said:
“What we can do of course is improve”. “When all the players are available we showed in this last period where we belong. I don’t know, maybe in this period, after lockdown, we finished third or fourth in the table.
“So that’s where we belong. I want to have my team, my players, not a medical room full of players. I want a pitch full of players. “Of course as a squad, the main thing is to keep our very good players and after that improve the squad. “Are we going to buy 10 players? No. Are we going to buy players for £100m? No. We are going to improve.
He further said:
“I enjoy working with Steve Hitchen, Spurs’ chief scout in this organisation. We are very connected with chairman, Mr Daniel Levy and the board and we’re going to do what is possible to do and hopefully next season we can give it to the fans a very good season.”
Mourinho has masterminded a six-game unbeaten run to deliver qualification, overturning a seven-point gap from sixth after a loss at Sheffield United earlier this month.
“I think the players deserve,” he said. “Of course everybody that one day plays Champions League doesn’t want to go back and play Europa League but (it) was the only thing possible after such a difficult season for the club, for the players and in my case also for myself.
“But arriving 14th and handling things is not bad at all. I am quite happy next season we play in Europa League and it’s just a question to motivate ourselves for that competition and try to motivate the fans to support us and try to do something beautiful.”
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