Jose Mourinho has joined Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas in questioning the atmosphere surrounding home games following Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with West Brom on Saturday, claiming that there is a “different profile of the club’s supporters.
The Blues looked like they were heading to their second straight defeat when Stephane Sessegnon put the Baggies 2-1 up, only for a controversial penalty awarded by referee Andre Marriner to let them off the hook, with Eden Hazard converting from the spot in the 95th minute.
Mourinho admitted that he understands the fans’ love for the club and that they can boost the side at crucial times, although he suggested that the atmosphere that is currently experienced at Stamford Bridge is “not that hot”.
“This is Stamford Bridge's nature,” said Mourinho. “We know that our fans are in love with the club, more than in any other club or the same, but it is a different profile.
“We know Stamford Bridge is not a very hot atmosphere, not a very strong atmosphere normally, and we accept that.
“But in the last part of the game, when they felt the players were up to have a go and a fight, they were very much behind the team and they support the team.”
Mourinho believed that the challenge on Ramires by Steven Reid was a clear penalty, but still criticised Marriner for what he said were a number of errors against his side.
The Portuguese’s comment following the match echoed his countryman’s after he criticised the atmosphere at White Hart Lane for being too negative towards the players.
Following the win against Hull a fortnight ago, Villas-Boas said: "It was a victory where we had to dig deep in ourselves, because we weren’t getting any help from anybody. We played in a difficult atmosphere with almost no support.
"We have a wonderful set of fans, but they can do better. We don’t need the negativity that was in White Hart Lane today."
A Chelsea spokesman later confirmed that the issue of the poor atmosphere at Stamford Bridge has been brought up many times before at the Fans Forum, and it will be discussed in detail at the next one on December 1.
Manchester United are one club that has taken action to try and improve the atmosphere at home matches, having started a project to allocate a certain area of the away end to home fans that want to sing and chant throughout the match, having implemented this during the Champions League match against Real Sociedad.
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