Mourinho praises Chelsea players following ‘perfect game’ vs. Swansea
Jose Mourinho hailed the "perfect game" after his Chelsea side underlined their Barclays Premier League title credentials by sweeping aside Swansea 5-0 at the Liberty Stadium.
Oscar and Diego Costa both scored twice in the first half to put Chelsea in cruise control before substitute Andre Schurrle grabbed a fifth goal 11 minutes from time to ensure Swansea suffered their heaviest home defeat for 24 years.
"It was a perfect game, everything went in our direction," Chelsea manager Mourinho said. "To score a goal in the first minute makes an immediate difference. To be 4-0 up at half-time is not game over, especially in the Premier League, but it’s a good situation to control and we did that in the second half."
He added: "I was on the bench saying they were similar goals in terms of principles as the one we scored against Burnley in the first game of the season. The team is playing with high quality and has a clear identity of playing. Sometimes teams are good and play well without the clear identity, but all this season we are going in a certain direction and have a certain kind of way to play football."
Chelsea’s win opened up a five-point lead on their nearest challengers Manchester City, who entertain Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, but Mourinho felt the victory would not increase the pressure on Manuel Pellegrini’s chasers.
"I don’t think they feel it (pressure)," Mourinho said. "They have to win but they know that. We don’t feel pressure, we feel responsibility, and for them it’s not a problem. A team like them with the experience they have – much more than us – it’s not a problem. I keep saying the same to my players and they have to understand it, there is no history without titles so if we play fantastically well and we don’t win cups in 20 years time no one will remember this team."
Mourinho: "I am the first one that wants the team to play well but we have to win competitions. This team is a young team with lots of years in front of them, but we are trying this season to make some history by winning something."
Mourinho said he felt for his opposite number Garry Monk, who was without three midfielders in Leon Britton, Jonjo Shelvey and Ki Sung-yueng and who was forced to play Gylfi Sigurdsson in an unfamiliar deeper role. Swansea also appeared to carry a hangover following the $37 million midweek sale of top scorer Wilfried Bony and Monk later apologized for a performance which never recovered from Sigurdsson losing possession inside the first minute for Oscar to open the scoring.
"I said sorry to Jose that I couldn’t give him a game today," Monk said. "It was a horrible performance and the first 45 minutes was our worst of the season. It’s difficult to make those mistakes continuously and against a Chelsea side like that it magnifies it even more."
Monk added: "We didn’t give fans the performance we wanted and I can only apologize because it’s my team and I take full responsibility for that."
But Monk insisted that Swansea’s heaviest home defeat since a 6-1 thrashing to Wigan in April 1991 would not derail a league campaign which has seen them placed in the top 10 all season.
"The good thing is we’re still in a good position and I don’t worry about the long-term because I know the characters in that dressing room," Monk said. "It’s one performance we have to reflect on and learn from but every time we’ve had a disappointment we’ve reacted straight away and this defeat won’t define our season."