Mourinho defends Aurier after Tottenham fall at home to Leicester

The Ivorian was penalised for a careless shove on James Justin and Jamie Vardy opened the scoring from spot with the final kick of the first half.

The former England striker then forced an own goal from Toby Alderweireld, as the Foxes condemned a lacklustre Spurs to consecutive defeats and leapfrogged them in the table.

It was the fourth penalty Aurier has conceded since his Spurs debut in 2017, with only David Luiz conceding more (five) in the same period, but Mourinho refused to criticised the right-back.

“Is it a problem? Let’s focus on today,” said Mourinho afterwards.

“Today he made a mistake but before his mistake in minute 45 or 46 we had other players making mistakes in other areas of the pitch. I can’t blame a player for a mistake.

“The penalty is not a penalty ‘created’, it’s not something that comes in the sequence of something great,” the Spurs manager added. “For me, it comes completely unrelated to the context at the time, because at the time it was our best period of the first half.

“We start bad, the first maybe 20 minutes was a poor performance, some empty spots in terms of pressing, attitude, recovering the ball. I didn’t like at all. During the first half, we changed, adapted the positions, especially in midfield. The team improved a lot, we have a period of domination, a couple of good chances. And then the penalty, which was out of context of the game at the moment.

“They didn’t trouble us. They scored Toby an own goal and I don’t remember anything else. I remember [Kasper] Schmeichel making a phenomenal save from Sonny on the far post and us being dominant and trying. We didn’t create 15 chances in the second half.

( PA )

“But they’re a good team, they know how to defend, drop the lines back and they created difficulties with their defensive organisation.”

One point from three matches has dented Tottenham’s aims of the season but Mourinho said they were only focussed on Wednesday’s EFL Cup quarter-final at Stoke.

He continued: “I’m frustrated when I lose but it’s not like there is a target that cannot be achieved. Our target is to win the next match and the result of the previous matches they don’t interfere in our target for the next match.

“The next match we want to win like we wanted to win today. Don’t get me wrong. I want to win matches and what happens in the match before shouldn’t have an impact on the next one, which is what I think is going to happen. We have to try always to win the next match.”

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