Mourinho slams ‘clueless’ rule-makers after Dier ban
Four-game suspension and £40k fine for England defender Spurs manager criticises the FA’s ‘powerful people’ in charge
Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho has accused “powerful people” of “not having a clue about the world” after his defender, Eric Dier, was hit with a four-match ban by the Football Association for climbing into the stands to confront a spectator. The fan had been arguing with Dier’s youngest brother, Patrick, at the end of Spurs’ FA Cup defeat by Norwich at the start of March.
Jose Mourinho has accused football’s “powerful people” of being clueless, after the Football Association hit Tottenham Hotspur’s Eric Dier with a four-game ban.
Dier has been punished for jumping into the stands to confront a Spurs supporter at the end of his club’s FA Cup defeat by Norwich City at the start of March. The defender was also fined £40,000.
The England player was charged after he entered the stands to offer protection to his youngest brother, Patrick, who had become embroiled in an argument with a fan.
In the written reasons for Dier’s punishment, which was announced yesterday, it was revealed that the supporter had called the player a “w-----” and a “f------ c---”.
Mourinho, the Tottenham head coach, did not name the FA when asked whether players received enough protection inside stadiums, but he said: “My feeling is that in the majority of the cases, football is not protected by the people that are powerful and don’t belong to this world. That’s simply my feeling.
“Powerful people that don’t belong to the tribe and they don’t have the feelings. They don’t have the know-how and it’s very, very difficult to lead something when you don’t have a clue about the world that you are leading.
“We play the football that we love, the football that some people with big responsibilities sometimes don’t look like they love, but we love football.
“I don’t want to speak about Eric Dier now because in the end I’m going to open my heart and that’s something that I do not want to do.”
While Mourinho was clearly upset with the decision that rules Dier out of tonight’s trip to Bournemouth and key games against Arsenal, Newcastle United and Leicester City, he showed a forgiving side towards the player’s abuser.
Dier was only spared a five-game ban thanks to the intervention of Gareth Southgate, the England manager, but Mourinho said the supporter who instigated the clash would be welcome back at Tottenham when fans can return. “I want fans back as soon as possible,” Mourinho said. “Of course we prefer fans to support, of course we prefer fans to react, but the beauty of football is the fans. I want them back. Even that specific fan, especially because the fan had the opportunity to meet the player, had the opportunity to apologise to the player, had the opportunity to understand that we are very well paid, but we are not robots.
“We have families and friends that support us in the stadiums. So I think it was a good opportunity for that fan to turn his profile and become a different fan.”
Asked to confirm that Dier had met his abuser, who admitted to police that he was “being an idiot” and had not felt threatened by the player, Mourinho said: “It was his own decision to do it, because the person in this case, first of all, is a Tottenham fan and he was sorry about what happened.
“The way I was told, he had the dignity to want to apologise. It was a nice thing that, in normal circumstances, especially after saying that he never felt under threat at any moment of the situation, would be enough for a fair decision.”
Crowd control: Tottenham’s Eric Dier climbs into a stand in March to confront a fan (top right)