Spurs, Everton Injury updates, European dreams; Ancelotti defends Mourinho, ahead of showdown

Jose Mourinho-Tottenham Hotspur

Everton are set to host Tottenham in the weekend Premier League clash at Goodison Park. Both the teams are pushing harder for a place in the top four with Spurs currently sitting seventh in the table, a point and a place ahead of Toffees.

Here’s what Jose Mourinho has said ahead of the clash.

Injury updates: Matt Doherty and Been Davies out

Jose Mourinho confirmed that both Matt Doherty and Ben Davies won’t feature against Everton due to injuries.

“Same. Doherty and Davies out. Let’s say the first team players, everything the same, Dane Scarlett that I can consider a first-team player because he’s working with us every day got injured, in the youth cup match. He will not be available for a couple of weeks, maybe.”

Mourinho’s comments on the crucial fixtures ahead.

Spurs will face nine crucial games starting from the Toffees clash and Mourinho comments on the deciding fixtures ahead.

Yeah, but independent of the result at Goodison, and the result against Southampton, as you say, big nine days and the nine days are going to end with a cup final. Which of course, for all of us, is going to be an important moment.

So we are not depending on the Goodison result to go to that final with the best spirit, with the best feelings. But at this moment, the final is still a little bit far. And of course, the Goodison match is very important. The distance between the two teams is very, very short. Of course, they have one match in hand, in relation to us. But the distance is very, very short. They have similar objectives to ours. They are going to fight with us, and with other clubs to try the best possible position, and see if we and them can get a European position.

So it’s an important match tomorrow. We need to separate the waters. We need to say: the cup final is important but is not the match tomorrow, we need to focus totally on a very difficult match.

Mourinho on a lot of academy stars in the training

We did a training session in different groups and even on different pitches and we were trying to develop different qualities.

To do that, we separated our players into different groups and we needed some young players to help us in developing that training session. At the same time, it’s not just about using them to try to develop their qualities because every time they come to us it’s a very positive experience for them.

So the academy boss Dean [Rastrick] is always very, very open – he likes to help us, he knows that we also help him help the development of those players. It was good for us because they help us and good for them because we help them.

We have 20 players available out of 22, it’s not a question of injuries or not enough players or taking these young players to the next match. No. It’s not about that at all.

Mourinho believes Champions League hopes still alive

We’re very close to each other but there are more clubs around. There are some clubs with a few more points, some others with a few less but with still more than 20 points on the table, I think it’s still open. Of course, it’s the kind of match where the winner gets the points and stops the loss from getting them. If you draw you stay more or less in the same position. So understandably I don’t think anything will be decided in there. But of course, if one of the two teams wins and gets an advantage, that can be important in the direct duel. Not in the relation to all the others that are around. If one team wins, of course, gets an important advantage over the other.

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Ancelotti speaks about the European challenge

The Toffees are currently well off the top-four race yet the Italian gaffer believes the fight is still open.

“There are a lot of teams involved there. We dropped some points in the last few games. We need to get the result against Tottenham and then we have some important games. It is open for everyone but difficult for everyone.”

Ancelotti’s take on Mourinho and Spurs.

The Toffees boss believes the contest would be an open-ended one with both teams can score goals.

Furthermore, Ancelotti reckons the pressure Mourinho is facing is normal.

“Every manager tried to do his best. We try to do our best. I am not able to judge Mourinho’s job. In my opinion, he always does a fantastic job. Pressure on a manager is normal. Every manager has to manage the pressure.”