Former Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has defended under-fire Jose Mourinho, telling talkSPORT ‘no one can criticise’ the boss for his tactics in Sunday’s north London derby.
Spurs threw away a one goal lead – and what a goal it was too – as Arsenal came back to claim a 2-1 victory their dominant performance deserved at the Emirates Stadium.
And Mourinho has copped the majority of the blame after their latest poor display in what has been a roller-coaster season for the London club.
Much was expected from the team after three straight Premier League wins, especially with Harry Kane, Gareth Bale, Heung-min Son and Lucas Moura all starting against the Gunners.
But the visitors created very little throughout the game, with Mourinho accused of holding his players back with his negative approach to big games against the top teams.
Former Tottenham players Jamie O’Hara and Jermaine Jenas were among those critical of Mourinho, with O’Hara telling talkSPORT he had Spurs set up ‘playing like crabs’ while Match of the Day pundit Jenas said the team’s recent promise was ‘all a lie’.
After the game, though, Mourinho pointed the finger at his players and accused them of ‘hiding’ against their biggest rivals.
And, speaking on Monday’s talkSPORT Breakfast, Redknapp defended the boss.
“No one can criticise Jose Mourinho for not picking an attacking team, he picked four forwards!” Redknapp said.
“Moura, Bale, Son and Kane, it was a very attacking looking line-up with two attacking full backs, too.
“They just never really got hold of the ball.
“Arsenal dominated midfield and had more players who can get on the ball and play and keep the ball and they deserved the win.”
Simon Jordan agreed, as he called for the Tottenham players to take a long hard look at themselves.
While Mourinho has taken the brunt of the criticism, the talkSPORT pundit told Jim Whiteit’s not just the manager’s fault and players must take more responsibility for their poor performances on the pitch.
The former Crystal Palace owner said: “When does it become the responsibility of the highly-paid, highly-trained professional footballers at the highest level to be able to change the game themselves?
“The manager sets them up, but if something different happens on the pitch – these are not intel players programmed and moved around by the manager, these are players who can see the game in front of them themselves so why are they able to make decisions?
“Are we saying that all players are are a product of a manager’s coaching? Aren’t they individual? Aren’t they capable of being able to assess a game and change things themselves?
“Surely these top-level players are capable of adapting without someone telling them what to do in every second.
“Why is it wrong for Mourinho to call out their performance? If you’ve set a team up with four front-line offensive players and they stink the place out, is that just the manager’s responsibility? When does it become that players are culpable?”