Football News

How Spurs inspired one of Jose Mourinho’s most famous catchphrases

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 18:10, 20 November 2019

Tottenham Hotspur have appointed Jose Mourinho as the club’s 10th permanent coach this century – after he accused them of ‘parking the bus’ back in 2004.

The 56-year-old coach had been unemployed since last December after Manchester United sacked him following a run that saw the Red Devils win just seven of their opening 17 league matches.

Mourinho and Spurs: Five key things to know…

  • Jose Mourinho has replaced Mauricio Pochettino as manager of Tottenham Hotspur.
  • This will be his third managerial job in England having previously coached Chelsea and Man Utd.
  • He’s faced 22 times before, winning 13 of those encounters and losing five times.
  • His first meeting was a goalless draw in September 2004 at Stamford Bridge.
  • Mourinho would subsequently coin his now infamous catchphrase by accusing Spurs of parking the bus.

Mourinho subsequently entered the world of punditry, although he was determined to return to management at the highest level, with the Premier League remaining a preference.

That being said, his name was being associated with a number of clubs, including the recently vacated Bayern Munich job, but chances of an appointment in Bavaria looked few and far between. His moment came when Spurs felt they reached the end of the road with Mauricio Pochettino at the helm.

His succession raised a few eyebrows given a clash between Mourinho and the club’s recent philosophy shaped by their former manager. There’s also Mourinho’s past – having managed arch-rivals Chelsea in two separate spells.

His first, which came on the back off guiding FC Porto to an unlikely European Cup triumph in 2004, was sprinkled by a number of flashpoints, including a goalless draw against Spurs in September 2004 leading to Mourinho coining his now infamous “park the bus” catchphrase.

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“Tottenham might as well have put the team bus in front of their goal,” Mourinho said. “Sometimes when you are a big club, a very small club comes to your stadium. Tottenham got a point they shouldn’t,” he told reporters.

“We wanted to play. They didn’t. We wanted to score. They didn’t. Every time they just kicked the ball away. It is frustrating for me, my players, for every Chelsea supporter and for every football supporter. Because people don’t pay to see one team play and the other team falling down, demanding to see the medical department.

“There were five minutes of added time at the end. For me, there should have been 15. If you had stopped the watch every time they fell down, there would have been 15 minutes. [Thimothee] Atouba was down injured for five minutes and then took five minutes to walk off the pitch. The referee has to protect against this.

“We finished with all our strikers on – Kezman, Duff, Drogba and Gudjohnsen. You don’t finish with so many attackers on if the other team are also trying to win it. The next time, instead of having William Gallas and Alexei Smertin on the bench, I will have Adrian Mutu and Arjen Robben. I don’t need defenders.”