Mourinho plays down title talk, Guardiola rues lack of goals

Spurs ended the day top of the table for the first time since 2014 but manager Jose Mourinho played down the significance of its two-point advantage in contention for the title.

Mourinho, played down the significance of its two-point advantage over next week's opponent Chelsea while Pep Guardiola blamed City's poor goal-scoring form this season.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho talked down his team's chances of being title contender after a 2-0 win over Manchester City sent the North London club top of the Premier League on Saturday.

It is the first time since August, 2014 that Spurs ends the day top of the table and the first time it has done so after in at least nine top-flight games since 1985.

But Mourinho, always a manager wary of creating pressure, played down the significance of its two-point advantage over next week's opponent Chelsea.

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"It feels good (to be top), but maybe tomorrow we are second again and honestly that would not be a problem for me, I am just happy with the evolution," he said in the knowledge that a Leicester City win at Liverpool on Sunday would send the Foxes above Spurs.

"People cannot expect us to come here and after one season we are fighting for the title. We are not fighting for the title, we are just fighting to win every match. But we are going to lose matches, we are going to draw matches," he said.

"Dinner tonight will be nice and relaxed and I will watch Atletico Madrid v Barcelona and sleep like an angel. But no problem if Leicester wins and we are second again," he said.

 

The Portuguese, however, couldn't hide his pride at an accomplished performance from his side.

"Big team, big hearts, big solidarity, a proper team, a team that I believe makes Tottenham fans proud. Players going to the limits of their energy, sacrifice for the game plan, coping well with lets say a new pressure of If you win the match, you go top of the league for a 24 hours. Im very proud. They deserve big applause and lots of respect," he said.

City, who is 10th, has a negative goal difference after scoring only 10 goals in nine games, 17 less than at this stage last season.

"The stats speak for themselves," said manager Pep Guardiola.

"We were better in many departments but we didn't score. The team defended so deep and were waiting for a mistake. We found some moments but the reality is we are struggling to score goals this season. That can happen," he said.

Mourinho fears injured Alderweireld faces lengthy absence

Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld could face a lengthy spell on the sidelines after suffering a groin injury in Saturday's 2-0 win over Manchester City.

The Belgian centre half limped off in the 81st minute after going down with the injury and manager Jose Mourinho did not sound optimistic of a quick return.

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"It's bad. It's a muscular injury in the adductor. The dimension of course we don't know, we have to wait, but it's a difficult injury for sure," he said.

Asked if it was potentially a long-term injury, the Spurs manager said: "I would say so".

Joe Rodon, a transfer deadline signing from Swansea City, replaced the Belgian alongside Eric Dier in defence.

Mourinho suggested the injury was influenced by fatigue.

"We don't have anybody to blame. He played in the international matches that the (Belgian) team needed to win to qualify for the final four. With us he's playing so well we decided to play him rather than rest him.

"There's nobody to blame, just to recover as soon as possible," he said.

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