Mourinho hints at referee influence after poor Chelsea start

The manager has suggested that conceding two red cards and two penalties in three games is “not normal” as he looks to close the gap on table-toppers Manchester City

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has hinted that refereeing decisions have contributed to the club’s lacklustre start to their Premier League title defence. 

The Blues have struggled in the opening stages of the season, failing to find a win until their third fixture, a 3-2 victory away to West Brom, following an opening day draw with Swansea and a 3-0 loss to Manchester City.

Thibaut Courtois was sent off as the Premier League champions kicked off their campaign before captain John Terry was dismissed in the recent narrow victory at the Hawthorns for a pull on Salomon Rondon. 

Mourinho claimed the decisions affecting Chelsea’s performances are “not normal”, hacing conceded two penalties and two red cards – against Swansea and West Brom, respectively – in their first three games.

“I think the most important thing of this start to the season is that it’s not normal that, in three matches, you have two penalties against and play with 10 men twice,” Mourinho said.

“That’s the thing that immediately comes to the mind of someone analysing the situation. Apart from that, one match at home, two away, four points.”

Chelsea, who sit tenth in the Premier League table after three matches, host Alan Pardew’s Crystal Palace on Saturday, hoping to overtake the Eagles and gain a foothold in the top five.

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