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Mourinho praises Crystal Palace, insists that Chelsea have to do better

Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Another bad result for José Mourinho's Chelsea in the books, and another field day for criticism from neutrals -- although no one can say it's not deserved. It's also easy to overlook how strong domestic competition has been this season, and the manager doesn't want that to escape our attention.

"Congratulations to Crystal Palace. It's a fantastic result for them and was a very good performance from them. I think we didn't deserve to lose but I think Palace gave us a very difficult game and for me the result should have been a draw which would still be a bad result for us. But I think we did enough not to lose, we've had very good opportunities, we had a huge penalty when it was 0-0, but Crystal Palace played very well."

"What they did a few times is part of the game, you know -- to take time to make a change, to pretend an injury, you know, if you are playing in Stamford Bridge, if you are winning at Stamford Bridge I cannot expect them to be sprinting to make a goal kick or for not do that. That is part of the game and no complaints about it."

Mourinho also told the media that results like the one today shouldn't be as surprising as they once were in the Premier League, as they will happen more often -- and he predicted that.

"I told in pre-season before our bad results, I told that it would be more difficult to win matches because the non-candidates to the title are full of good players and they have very good teams, so this kind of result -- West Ham winning at Liverpool, Palace winning here --, this kind of result, people have to think that they can happen."

Asked about the need to strengthen the squad before the transfer window shuts in three days, he replied:

"Well, I think when you look to my two central defenders and to my goalkeeper they had a very good game so it was not there that we conceded two goals. We created lots of chances but I also have to say that we had, again, a couple of players that were not in the game and when the team is not consistent and in the way ten players are on the pitch and all of them performing at a certain level it's difficult because the Premier League is difficult, opponents are difficult."

"I'm not the kind of manager [to get desperate at the end of transfer window]. Today and tomorrow will be the last moment that I'm going to ask for players. I think we have to cope with our situation, we have to cope with our responsibilities, and we have to do better."

But when inquired about Chelsea's chances of retaining the Premier League title, José Mourinho avoided the question, speaking about the teams and referee performances today instead.

"You know, I did my report to the club on the 24th of April. And I did my job there. And now it is up to me to work with my players -- I repeat, I have good players -- and if my players performed better today we probably would have a different result, if the referee performs better and give us a penalty, one-nil; probably we could also have a better result but instead of be critic with myself, the players and the referee, I prefer to praise Crystal Palace; they did their job and they won."

To wrap it up, Mourinho refused to speak about any impeding John Stones deal, claiming that he will take a rest and get back to work next Tuesday, at the last day of this season's transfer window.

"I don't speak about players [John Stones] from other clubs. [...] [My next 72 hours] will consist of taking a rest and get back to work on Tuesday morning"

José Mourinho
Source: BBC
While individual mistakes are certainly to blame on some Chelsea goals this season, the team as a whole has not been up to par either defending or attacking. In both goals today, Chelsea's defensive unit was disorganized and failed to react to the ball in their own box while on the attacking third, only Pedro seemed to have a spark on him until Kenedy came on to act mostly as an left wing-back/midfielder rather than as a left back per se. It's time to the team to step up as a whole, but it all starts with Mourinho recognizing his side's own mistakes, either individually or as a whole unit. And if needed, some changes are also welcomed.

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