Mourinho: Capital One Cup was not Chelsea’s priority

Jose Mourinho Chelsea

Blues manager philosophical after 2-1 defeat at Sunderland

Jose Mourinho insisted that the Capital One Cup was ‘not a priority’ for his side after the Blues were knocked out at the quarter-final stage by Sunderland on Tuesday night.

Fabio Borini and Ki Sung-Yueng scored the goals for Gus Poyet’s side after Frank Lampard had given Chelsea the lead early in the second half at the Stadium of Light.

As has been a feature of Chelsea’s recent games, they created and missed a host of chances before allowing their opponents to fight their way back into the contest. Samuel Eto’o and Demba Ba, in particular, missed opportunities on a frustrating night for Chelsea.

Mourinho was philosophical however, telling Sky Sports after the game: “The team I played was a very good team and we wanted to try to win.

“But we always thought that this competition would be the one where we were not so focussed, it was not a priority for us to try to win.

“We do not have to bounce back but we have to score goals and kill opponents.”

Mourinho left the likes of Fernando Torres, Eden Hazard and Oscar on the bench for the trip to the north-east. His stance could be considered surprising given Chelsea’s strength in depth, and the fact that Premier League and Champions League success is by no means guaranteed.

But Mourinho will undoubtedly have had an eye on next Monday’s Premier League clash with Arsenal, and it seems that this was one competition he was prepared to sacrifice.

However, Chelsea’s strikers have only three goals in the last eight games between them, and Mourinho was clearly bemused by their continuing struggles in front of goal.

He said: “This is the same story as Stoke and Everton. We never lost a match because of the way we play or because the opponent was stronger than us.

“We lost the match because we don’t kill opponents. Every opponent that plays against us knows that they can score a goal and change the truth of the result.”

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch