Almost as shocking as Chelsea’s 2-1 home loss to Crystal Palace was manager Jose Mourinho’s ability to praise the opponent in the immediate aftermath.
Mourinho gave the Palace squad and fans much of the credit for pounding Chelsea into submission at Stamford Bridge, something a Premier League opponent has done just one other time to a Mourinho-led team.
His first comments after coming off the field confirmed his admiration for Alan Pardew‘s setup, saying, “My first thought is for Palace. They came with everything; team ready, players ready, fans ready, fantastic spirit.”
As for his side, the Portuguese manager said that Cheslea “deserved more” than the loss but “did not deserve to win” as Palace took the lead in the 65th minute despite heavy possession advantage for the home side.
While Mourinho was congratulatory of some players’ performances, he did admit not all his eleven were at championship form, saying, “A performance is a collective performance, all 11 [players]. 2-3 of them, the individual performance was far from good.” He did, of course, praise the player he brought into the side, saying Kurt Zouma‘s 90 minutes in place of John Terry were solid in defense.
However, in more typical Mourinho fashion, he did mention how his team was somewhat slighted by the referee. The Chelsea boss believed Zouma should have been given a penalty when he was felled in the box in the first half, calling the no-call a “big mistake” from the referee.