Jose Mourinho has admitted that Harry Winks was left “completely dead” after Tottenham’s heartbreaking defeat to Norwich on Wednesday night.
Spurs fell to the Canaries on a penalty shootout in the FA Cup fifth round last night after a hard fought 1-1 draw at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
And highlighting one man in particular from a fatigued side, Tottenham boss Mourinho conceded that central-midfielder Winks was beginning to feel the toll of starting 11 consecutive matches.
“Harry Winks was completely dead,” Mourinho admitted at full-time. “I think he's started 11-12 games in a row, we had many many players in trouble.”
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Reflecting on the game as a whole, the Portuguese added that he thought his side deserved to win over the course of 120 minutes, and that the intense run out had affected more of his squad than just Winks.
“It was a difficult game,” Mourinho went on. “I think we deserved to win on 90 minutes and on 120.
“Some of my players were really, really in trouble and they made an excellent effort to try.
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“I'm not going to say what everyone knows but I have to say [Steven] Bergwijn, it's too much for him to play as many minutes as he has to play.
“I’m so sad for the boys but I don’t criticise, I just can’t. The boys, they gave what they have and what they don’t have.
“Some reached the limit, like Lucas [Moura], like Bergwijn, they reached the limit and they told me ‘one more minute and I am in big, big trouble’.
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“Some of the others stayed and stayed until their limits, when I look, for example, to Giovani Lo Celso, a performance I feel was absolutely incredible.
“After the equaliser, the team had an incredible reaction. Normally, you could just die, and even in a moment where Lucas was not playing, Bergwijn was not playing, without them, the boys who were on the pitch tried absolutely everything to win.
“We were so close in 90, so close in 120, then we lose on penalties. It was frustrating and I repeat, I’m very sad for the boys.”
- Tottenham Hotspur FC
- Norwich City FC
- FA Cup
- Jose Mourinho
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