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Golden silence for Mourinho.

Byline: Tom Hopkinson's verdict

TO think it was just 12 weeks ago that Jose Mourinho accused Chelsea's fans of being quiet.

Of not making enough noise in a routine 2-1 victory over QPR. Of making Stamford Bridge feel like an empty stadium.

Oh, the irony of those words now that the Special One rebranded himself as the Silent One both before and after the biggest game of this Premier League season.

Who cares that this match was being beamed into 650million homes across 175 countries? That even Kazakhstan's Premier League rights holders sent a delegation to a top-flight match for the first time?

No matter, Mourinho, the man whose thoughts on this game the whole world - well, the whole football-supporting world - wanted to hear silenced himself in a petty protest at the fact that he thinks the world is against him.

There are those who think Mourinho is losing the plot, that the pressure is mounting on the Portuguese, and after reading his pre-match Charm, outrage indignation Jose one another. silent just programme notes many more would have been inclined to agree.

"You helped us feel warm on a cold night," he wrote to the same fans he criticised at the start of November, referring to the backing they gave their side against Liverpool in the League Cup semi-final second leg here on Tuesday.

"And we felt invincible because we felt we were too much for them. We were not just 11, we were 40,011."

But those who have spent time in Mourinho's company, even if it is only at press conferences, will tell you that isn't the case.

Charm, fury, outrage, indignation, he can flit from one emotion to another with ease, and this latest silent protest will not have been anything more than another tactic employed to lead his men closer to the title.

They certainly played with a togetherness their manager will have been proud of, working hard for each other, and in not losing they rather than City will be happier with their point. After all, Manuel Pellegrini described this as a must-win game and on that front his side failed, even if they were perhaps the better side, particularly after David Silva's equaliser.

What gave Mourinho the chance to bring on the silent treatment was fury, and ... can flit from emotion to And his protest is another tactic the claim by Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp that Diego Costa should have been sent off here on Tuesday for the stamp on Martin Skrtel which led to his three-game ban.

Of course, Mourinho will have been upset to lose his striker for this game but to the extent that he felt it really necessary to gag himself? Not likely. Mourinho shattered any illusions that his current bout of rage was really anything more than a show as he plonked himself on the bench, scowling, for all the cameras to see.

He was animated during the game, barking at fourth official Jon Moss repeatedly. Often, he had a point.

Of course, he'd have loved to have had Costa available but the Silent One got a result that will have pleased him far more than Pellegrini.

Not that he told us, but you'd guess that was the case.

Charm, fury, outrage and indignation ... Jose can flit from one emotion to another. And his silent protest is just another tactic

CAPTION(S):

QUIET WORD: Mourinho has his say with referee Clattenburg

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Feb 1, 2015
Words:573
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