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Dublin: 5 °C Friday 13 December, 2019

Mourinho comes out smiling as he vows to make Spurs title challengers next season

Jose calls his players ‘a gift’ and says the won’t make the same mistakes as he did in previous jobs.

New Spurs manager Jose Mourinho.
New Spurs manager Jose Mourinho.
Image: Nick Potts

JOSE MOURINHO BELIEVES he can make Tottenham Hotspur Premier League title challengers next season, as he vowed not to make the same mistakes which cost him the Manchester United job last December.

The new Spurs manager manager says he was sold a vision by chairman Daniel Levy and declared the players he has to work with are a “gift”, insisting they are the reason he agreed to take over.

Mourinho was announced as Mauricio Pochettino’s successor the morning after the Argentine was sacked on Tuesday night and he was equally quick to lay out his plans for the course of his four-year deal, understood to be £8 million per year after tax.

“We cannot win the Premier League this season, but we can win it next season. Not will, but can,” Mourinho began.

“Happiness-wise, I am convinced my choice was a great one. When a club changes mid-season, it is because things are not good. Sometimes results make these decisions. I wouldn’t say it’s a [big] job. The potential of the club is huge, the potential of the players is great.

One of the reasons I came was the vision Mr Levy put in front of me about this club. I know that I have potentially a great job in my hands. The best gift are the players who are here. I don’t need new players. I just need to get to know these ones better,” he added.

“I know them well but you never know them well enough until you meet them. I told the players I came here because of them. I tried to buy some for different clubs and some I didn’t even try [to buy] because you know how difficult it was.

“I am stronger, I am relaxed, I am motivated, I am ready and I think the players felt that in two days. I am ready to support them, this is not about me. It is about the club. I am here to try and help everyone.”

Mourinho expressed regret at past misdemeanors and was adamant his time away from management, during which he worked as a pundit for Sky Sports, has allowed him take stock. 

“I realised I made mistakes. I’m not going to make the same mistakes. I’ll make new mistakes – but not the same. I am humble, humble enough to try and analyse my career – not just the last year, but the whole thing, the evolution, the problems and the solutions. Not to blame anyone else.

It was a great thing. I went really deep with that analysis. A break was very positive for me. It was the first summer I did not work and I felt a little bit at a loss during that pre-season.

“I was always humble, in my way. The problem is you didn’t understand that.”

Speaking of his predecessor, Mourinho added: “I do it with a bit of sadness, but I have to speak about Mauricio [Pochettino].

“I have to congratulate him for the work he has done. This club will always be his home. This training ground will always be his training ground. The door will always be open for him.

“He can come when he wants. When he misses the players, when he misses the people he worked with. The door is always open for him.

“He will find happiness again. He will find a great club again. He will have a great future.”

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