Jose Mourinho says first half against Newcastle was 'worst I’ve seen at Chelsea'

'Awful individual performances' to blame for his side going in behind at half-time

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The Independent Football

Citing “awful individual performances” and a first-half display from Chelsea that he rated minus one out of 10, Jose Mourinho was both “relieved” and “disappointed” at Chelsea’s 2-2 draw at Newcastle United here last night. 

The draw left Chelsea 15th in the Premier League and meant the champions failed to gain as much as they wanted after Manchester City’s 4-1 mauling at Tottenham. Chelsea are eight points behind new leaders Manchester United.

Trailing 2-0 to a reinvigorated Newcastle, Chelsea were grateful to retrieve a point due to late goals from substitutes Ramires and Willian. But Mourinho said he would dwell on the “negative” first half rather than the comeback. Asked if it was as bad as any he had seen in his time at the club, he replied: “For sure.” 

Mourinho said he had endured a few poor efforts at Chelsea and picked out a 3-0 defeat at Middlesbrough from 2006  – when Steve McClaren, Newcastle’s manager, was in charge of Boro. 

With John Terry again on the bench, Chelsea were overrun in spells by a Newcastle team inspired by Georginio Wijnaldum and Ayoze Perez. Whereas Mourinho observed “so many bad individual performances made it impossible for the team to be a team”, McClaren said: “We looked a team today. The players have responded to this week.” 

Meanwhile Manchester City will go to Borussia Mönchengladbach for this week’s crunch Champions League tie facing a crisis of form and fitness. Yesterday’s defeat at White Hart Lane  was their third in 11 days, while Vincent Kompany and Yaya Touré joined a growing injury list. 

Manager Manuel Pellegrini declined to complain about referee Mark Clattenburg allowing two Spurs goals that were  offside. “Maybe some part is a refereeing mistake,” he said, “but another part is also a mistake of our defence.”