Tottenham’s players were reportedly left stunned by Jose Mourinho’s latest dig at them following their 2-2 draw with Newcastle United last weekend.
Spurs have been far from convincing in recent weeks, and the dropped points against the struggling Magpies saw them miss the opportunity to break into the top four.
There are rumours of a split in the dressing room, with Mourinho said to have fallen out with a number of big names.
And according to The Independent they were left furious with the Portuguese manager’s words after full-time at St James’ Park.
When asked why his side appeared unable to hold onto a lead after they conceded yet another late equaliser, Mourinho replied: “Same coach, different players”, suggesting that he feels the blame lies with those out on the pitch rather than him.
This has provoked an angry reaction from the squad, who feel Mourinho should take his fair share of blame for their defensive woes.
Mourinho’s future at Spurs is very much up in the air, but he is in danger of completely alienating himself from his team with his recent comments.
Spurs remain just three points off a place in the top four, but face a tricky-looking game against Manchester United this weekend.
And they also have the small matter of a Carabao Cup final against Manchester City to come later this month.
It is widely felt that if Mourinho fails to guide the side into the Champions League next season he will be sacked by chairman Daniel Levy in the summer.
But winning the Carabao Cup could save him, with Spurs looking for their first piece of silverware since 2008.
It means the next few weeks will prove crucial for Mourinho, and he will be desperate to get off to a good start with victory over his former club on Sunday.