Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho called his team’s defending “a joke” after Paris Saint-Germain scored deep into injury time Wednesday to take a commanding 3-1 lead into their Champions League quarterfinal return leg next week.
A second straight defeat has turned the pressure back on Mourinho’s Chelsea side, with big-spending PSG now favored to reach the last four in the European Cup for the first time since 1995 and Liverpool grabbing the impetus in the Premier League.
“When the games are tight and when you make the defensive mistakes, you are in trouble,” Mourinho said.
“We couldn’t transform these half chances into goals and on top of that we made defensive mistakes, the kind of individual defensive mistakes, and we paid the price.”
PSG substitute Javier Pastore capped the win with a brilliant goal in stoppage time. The Argentina playmaker gathered the ball on the right wing, cut inside and then jinked his way through the penalty area before planting a low shot inside goalkeeper Petr Cech’s near post.
“It was a horrible time to concede,” center half Gary Cahill told British broadcaster Sky Sports. “It’s a sloppy goal and unlike us. It was difficult to come here; 2-1 would have been okay to take to Stamford Bridge. It’s devastating.”
Mourinho was more scathing.
“He (Cahill) says sloppy. I say ridiculous,” later adding. “It’s not a goal, it’s a joke.”
He also criticized his forwards, with neither Andre Schuerrle or his replacement, Fernando Torres, making any impression in the absence of the injured Samuel Eto’o.
“It’s difficult for us to score goals,” Mourinho said. “I’m not happy with my strikers’ performances and I have to try things (for the return leg).”
Chelsea did well to contain Zlatan Ibrahimovic, PSG’s top scorer with more than 40 goals this season. But Jose Mourinho’s team was undone by lapses from captain John Terry and midfielder David Luiz, who gave the ball away leading up to the opening goal.
It came after only four minutes when Ezequiel Lavezzi twisted to sweep the ball home after Terry’s poor headed clearance. Eden Hazard equalized from the penalty spot midway through the first half, only for PSG to take the lead again in the 61st as Luiz shinned the ball into his own net.
Chelsea won the competition two years ago, although Mourinho was not in charge, getting past Napoli despite losing their quarterfinal first leg 3-1.
“I have nothing to lose now, I have to play thinking that it is possible,” Mourinho said. “To be fair, I don’t think Paris think that it’s done.”
PSG coach Laurent Blanc was full of praise for his players.
“We really believed we could …continued »