Jose Mourinho was understandably frustrated after seeing his side suffer a first Premier League defeat in over a month at Stoke City, the Blues losing 3-2 courtesy of a last-gasp strike by substitute Oussama Assaidi.
In a dominant first-half display we’d taken an early lead through Andre Schurrle, but after failing to take advantage of our superiority Stoke levelled just before the break through Peter Crouch.
Stephen Ireland put the hosts in front five minutes into the second half, but we hit back instantly, once again through the impressive Schurrle.
The game appeared to be heading for a draw until Assaidi’s late intervention, leaving Mourinho to reflect on a disappointing afternoon.
On the performance
‘After half an hour we should have been winning 3-0 or 4-0 and we weren’t,’ said the Portuguese.
‘When you play so well and it’s so easy, you find spaces and the three players behind the striker, Hazard , Mata and Schurrle, are playing so well and creating so much, you have to kill the game. Normally you kill the game but we didn’t.
‘I’ve been in football a long time and I’ve seen easy games where you don’t score. I can compare this first half to other first halves, Everton v Chelsea and Newcastle v Chelsea, they were exactly the same, with chances, chances, chances but we didn’t score one goal. In the last part of the first half against Everton we conceded a goal and we lost. At Newcastle we concede later. Here, we conceded an equaliser at the end of the first half again.
‘We played amazingly well at the beginning of the game, I have to say it was like Sunderland, with the three players behind the striker playing very, very well, but we didn’t score enough goals. On top of that we made defensive mistakes and conceded. If you don’t score a lot of goals but you don’t make defensive mistakes you can win with just one goal.
‘The problem was we didn’t score goals and we conceded a goal which was obviously a mistake. The third goal came in a period where we wanted to win and they didn’t want to lose, and these kind of situations can happen.
‘This team is a team that has to score goals and capitalise on the production of football we are not a physical team, we are not a team with conditions to defend against physical teams so we have to score when we have the game in our hands.
‘The team wants to attack and have the initiative. In the last 15-20 minutes we didn’t play well, the game they wanted was the game we gave them. It was easy for them and they were able to control it. Their goalkeeper was fantastic and he plays in every inch of the box, physically they are very strong and we gave them what they wanted.’
He also spoke about the change in mentality of his side
‘You can see the mentality is changing, you can see that with the way Hazard is playing; he isn’t dribbling from left to right or right to left anymore, he is attacking defenders, trying to score and trying to give the last ball.
‘He’s always in the game, you can say on Wednesday he was better, but not much better. He was fantastic again, the way he was changing speed with people trying to tackle him from behind, but we have to kill opponents when they are there to be killed.’
Mourinho insisted he is pleased with the efforts of his strikers
‘They are players trying to give everything for the team and working hard, fighting hard. When players try to do everything for my team, I can’t criticise.’
Mourinho’s counterpart, Mark Hughes, acknowledged is side had been given a tough time in the first half.
‘Chelsea gave us the run-around in the first half and we had to hang on in there,’ he said. ‘But in the second half I thought we were fantastic. The longer the game went on the more I felt we could get something out of it.’