Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown has asserted that Jose Mourinho’s time as a manager at the top level is up due to his failure to adapt tactically.
Mourinho has received considerable criticism for the way he set Spurs up in their last two games against Leipzig and Chelsea (Daily Mail and Football.London).
His decision to set his side up to defend deep and hit the opposition on the counter failed to work in either game as Spurs went on to lose both matches.
After the 2-1 defeat to Chelsea on Saturday, the Spurs boss was pretty defiant in his assertion that his team couldn’t have done any better due to the lack of attacking options, with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min currently both out with long-term injuries (Football.London).
Keown, however, insists that the Portuguese coach did have the attacking players at his disposal to hurt Chelsea and questioned why he couldn’t show more versatility with his tactical approach.
When asked if Mourinho was being realistic or defeatist in regards to his comments after the game, Keown told Sports Report on BBC Radio 5 Live (22/02/20 at 5:15 pm): “Well, when Lamela comes on, it shows that they have got players available to be attacking. It was the only time in the match [when they scored] that they got bodies in the box.
“If you are going to play so deep, as he is Mourinho. I just look at Mourinho now and think is Mourinho’s time been and gone. Where is the innovation from his tactics?
“I’m struggling to see what he does as a manager now. I know when I watch Guardiola it’s four at the back, it’s a midfield player that sits and they are really creative in front. Same with Klopp.
“He [Mourinho] has to have a good look at what he wants to do as a manager. And what way does he want to play? He has got good players there. It’s not enough to say that I don’t have enough bullets in the gun because he does.”
Spurs Web Opinion
Criticising Mourinho for a lack of tactical versatility is extremely harsh as he has shown throughout his career that he can adapt based on the squad at his disposal. Even in his short time at Spurs, he has shown that he is willing to alter his approach depending on the strengths and weaknesses of our opponents.