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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Rodgers blasts former mentor Mourinho

Brendan Rodgers has blasted the tactics of Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho after Liverpool fluffed their lines at Anfield, losing 2-nil to their Premier League title rivals.

Rodgers inferred Chelsea played an unsporting, negative, long-ball game -- and time-wasted from kick-off until the final whistle.

He delivered his verdict on the match coolly but there was fire in his comments which could spark a war of words with The Special One. 

In a post-match interview the Ulsterman pointedly told the BBC: "I can only pay tribute to my players."

He went on to say Liverpool were "clearly the better side" but Chelsea had parked "two buses" - a reference to the defensive tactics that defined Mourinho's approach to the game.

Congratulating Chelsea with all the honesty of a politician submitting his expenses, Rodgers said the Blues played with a "back six".

He said: "My team's a team that wants to be offensive. They want to win games by playing good football, to be creative.

"Chelsea were playing virtually with a back six, three midfield players in front, goalkeeper, and obviously looking to hit the ball long up to Demba Ba. And I thought for the game we controlled most of what they had, which was long balls through to Demba Ba, long throw-ins...

"It was interesting that they actually got in, I think it was the 92nd minute, a booking for time-wasting when it was clear right from the very off that was the case."

He added: "We aim to win the game in a sporting manner and we aim to be creative and attacking in our football."

The protege bites back

Jose Mourinho, naturally, saw things differently.

He told the Beeb the win was a "beautiful victory", a "magnificent performance by every one" of his players and an example of "great discipline and team work".

He bristled at the suggestion his tactics were negative and said he prepared his side to secure a maximum three points.

When asked whether he accepted the title race was now a three-way tussle between Liverpool, Manchester City and the Blues he replied: "Forget it, forget it."

Anyone who thinks Mourinho will "forget it" has a very short memory.

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