Jose Mourinho claimed the FA’s decision to revoke the red card of Arsenal’s Gabriel Paulista is a licence to retaliate.
Clearly outraged at the retrospective three-match ban imposed on Diego Costa for his role in the incident that led to Gabriel’s wrongful dismissal in Saturday’s London derby won by Chelsea, Mourinho said he would be banned to if he spoke honestly about his view of the matter.
“I don’t want to speak but now we know something which is that retaliation is allowed now. You can do it,” Mourinho said after Chelsea’s 4-1 Capital One Cup victory at Walsall.
“I don’t comment because if I bring examples and go deep and bring feelings into the discussion a big suspension will be waiting and I don’t want that. The team doesn’t need that. We lost an important player for three matches and don’t need to lose their manager. So I prefer to keep calm and quiet.”
Costa served the first match of his ban at the Banks’s Stadium. Asked if Chelsea could adapt without Costa for the games against Newcastle and Southampton, Mourinho said: “I don’t know if the squad can cope.
“Every time you lose a player it’s not good for the team and easier to accept an injury. An injury is part of the game and we have to be mentally ready. But this kind of situation goes much, much, much, much more deeply and the team is hurting, obviously.
“I don’t play, score, goals, tackle, recover balls for my team, but on the bench my communication is positive and after losing a player I don’t want the team to lose a manager as well. I prefer to be quiet.”
Mourinho is never that, and to prove the point he highlighted the discrepancy between the decision to rescind Gabriel’s red card with that to deny the same leniency to Nemanja Matic in February after he retaliated following the tackle by Ashley Barnes of Burnley in the FA Cup.
“You cannot compare a leg almost broken with mens’ discussion, you cannot compare that with a leg almost broken. That’s what it was (Gabriel/Costa fracas), a mens’ discussion.”
On a brighter note Mourinho was full of praise for his team’s performance against a committed if outclassed Walsall. Goals by Ramires, Loic Remy, Kenedy and Pedro sealed the win in a fixture Mourinho claimed Chelsea could not afford to lose.
“It was not easy. We started well. Had one or two chances, scored the goal and showed that even though they’re a good side we showed we were not here to make mistakes and throw away a competition.
“When you start with bad results as we did you cannot lose against a League One team. You can do that when the league is fantastic. To lose against a League One team now would not be good for us. We don’t need those feelings. I’m happy with the results and I’m happy with the players.”
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