Jose Mourinho celebrated the first trophy of his second stint in charge of Chelsea on Sunday afternoon, but was quick to praise his opposite number post-match.
Although Tottenham Hotspur made all the early running at Wembley, it was the Blues who edged towards League Cup glory when captain John Terry fired them ahead just before the half-time interval. And Diego Costa, via a deflection from Kyle Walker, doubled the lead for the Stamford Bridge club on 56 minutes to end a personal trophy drought of two years for Mourinho.
The Portuguese coach allowed his players just 20 minutes to celebrate their latest success, before preparation begins for the Premier League trip to West Ham United in midweek. But rather than soak up the glory in his post-match interview, the Chelsea coach was quick to praise his opposite number at Spurs, Mauricio Pochettino, who has won several admirers this season.
“It’s beautiful to be back at Wembley, but it will be 20 minutes of celebration, then back to training and we have a big game on Wednesday,” Mourinho said. “I’m really happy. I think I should start by talking about Tottenham and Mauricio because they are a fantastic team and he is building a great team. They gave us a fantastic match and I feel sorry for them because he is doing fantastic work.”
There was another reason for Chelsea and their supporters to celebrate on this day, as Manchester City suffered a fourth league defeat of the campaign when they fell to a 2-1 loss at Liverpool. This means that Mourinho’s side have maintained their five-point advantage at the head of the table, and they now also have a game in hand as they look to win a first league title since 2010.