Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Norwich City (after extra-time) – Reaction
(Norwich City won 3-2 on penalties)
JOSE MOURINHO could well do without further scrutiny of his underperforming team. However, the Spurs chief was quizzed and subsequently jumped to the defence of Eric Dier, after the player was
involved in a confrontation with a fan following the Lilywhites Emirates FA Cup defeat to Norwich City
All seemed well when Jan Vertonghen had headed Tottenham into an early lead. But a calamitous error from goalkeeper, Michel Vorm, handed Josip Drmic the opportunity to restore parity and when extra-time couldn’t separate the sides, a resulting penalty shootout saw the Canaries progress 3-2.
“I don’t think that is the most important thing of the game it does not belong to the game,” Mourinho explained.
“I think the game was so fantastic I think. It was a real representation of what the FA Cup is and has to be that I would prefer to speak about the game. But I cannot run away from your question.
“I think Eric Dier did something that we professionals cannot do but in these circumstances, every one of us would do.
“Because when somebody insults you and your family is there and you get involved with the person that is insulting you, in this case, a younger brother, I think Eric did what we professional we cannot do.”
Mourinho continued: “I repeat, probably every one of us would do. I repeat, we professionals we cannot do, but I repeat I am with the player and I understand the player.
“I have to say that also fantastic Norwich fans but our fans, they were fantastic with the team. They felt the effort, they felt the difficulties. They probably don’t know and if they don’t I have to say that Bergwijn, Lucas, Dele, all of them they told me I can’t carry on. I’m completely dead.
“Other players on the pitch they were also in big trouble. For example, Lo Celso was in big trouble and was absolutely phenomenal. The fans I think they were with the team until the last penalty kick which we missed.
“The people that are in these privileged positions by the tunnel. Of course, some are Tottenham fans but I think a lot of corporate, a lot of invitation, a lot of people with special status and probably it’s the place of the stadium where I sometimes have doubts over if they are the real Tottenham fans because these are the ones who support the boys until the last.
“This person insulted Eric, his family was there. His young brother was not happy with the situation and then Eric, I repeat, did what we professionals cannot do but did something that probably we would do.”
Look out for Jose Mourinho’s post-Norwich City press conference – courtesy of The Press Bureau – shortly…