Liverpool should take Mourinho's words as a warning - and not get complacent

Jose Mourinho Chelsea

Mind games? Or is Mourinho seriously considering fielding a weakened team for Sunday's huge Premier League clash?

Jose Mourinho has suggested that he may field a weakened team at Anfield at the weekend after Chelsea’s 0-0 draw with Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final last night.

It seems the Chelsea boss wishes to prioritise a shot at leading Chelsea to their second European Cup triumph rather than overhauling Liverpool for the Premier League title.

However, Liverpool should not be fooled about the rhetoric coming from Mourinho, and if Raheem Sterling’s comments regarding their own focus are anything to go by, they won’t be.

Mourinho has been saying for much of the season that he doesn’t believe his side will win the title, that Manchester City have the firepower and that Liverpool have the ‘privileged conditions’ of not having European football to contend with this term.

After last night's encounter in Madrid, he said: “I would play the players who are not going to play on Wednesday. My priority is the Champions League. But I’m not the club. I have to speak to them.”

Here he has left himself a little leeway by implying that if he does put out a ‘full strength’ team against Liverpool on Sunday, it will have been because of some sort of intervention from above him.

He might be trying to distract Reds’ boss Brendan Rodgers by trying to get him to think more about the team selection his old boss will use – when for much of the season the Northern Irishman has said the emphasis and focus of his staff and his players have been more on their own work, and the next game.

Let’s not forget that players that won’t play in the second leg at Stamford Bridge include Nemanja Matic, Mohamed Salah and Frank Lampard. Almost certainly one of Samuel Eto’o, Demba Ba or Fernando Torres will line up at Anfield. There are some pretty decent players for Mourinho to choose from and the side will not be low on quality and experience.

All Liverpool would need to do is keep doing what they’ve been doing for much of the season. They know they are going to face a good side come 14:05 on Sunday and will have to work hard to earn a 12th consecutive Premier League victory.

If they keep their focus then Mourinho’s words will have no bearing on the result whatsoever - not that it should in the first place.

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