Jose Mourinho claims Tottenham players ‘needed me mentally at half-time’ to inspire them to victory over Bri

Jose Mourinho believes a number of first-half setbacks required him to give the Tottenham players the mental lift they needed to beat Brighton.

Spurs found themselves 1-0 down at the break thanks to Adam Webster’s goal.

Spurs came from behind to claim a much-needed win at Brighton

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Spurs came from behind to claim a much-needed win at Brighton

They struggled to break down the Seagulls’ five-man defence but initially thought they took the lead through Harry Kane’s strike.

However, the effort was ruled out by VAR as the striker was ruled to be offside in what was an exceptionally marginal call.

Spurs were a different team in the second half though. Kane’s rebound and a clever looping effort from Dele Alli saw them turn things around to win 2-1.

It was a much-needed victory for Mourinho’s men following their home defeat to Chelsea on Sunday.

And the Portuguese suggested the loss to their London rivals was playing on his players’ minds and he needed to intervene in order to improve the mentality inside the changing room.

He told talkSPORT’s Declan McCarthy: “After defeat, the next match is always difficult emotionally.

“You think you are winning 1-0, then you’re not, then it is 0-0 and then couple of minutes later, you’re losing 1-0.

“Not easy to process and I understand the players felt it and they needed me at half-time. They needed me mentally to speak with them about that emotional control and the spirit they had to bring to the second half and it was fantastic there.

“This season is not easy for the boys. Last season they almost touched the sky and then this season for different reasons went in a very wrong direction for them.

“It’s not also easy for me as I’m very inexperienced at getting teams in the middle of the season. We are together. We’re working together.

“We know where we belong but at the moment it’s important to win the maximum points possible and to try to be in touch with the European football positions.

“They are good, a good team. They are very physically strong. They came and played with five defenders.

“We don’t have the kind of second striker to play and be more physical.”

Spurs showed great character to claim the win

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Spurs showed great character to claim the win

Mourinho also praised Kane, who had the disallowed goal setback in the first half while also clearing things up as to why midfielder Tanguy N’dombele wasn’t included in the matchday squad.

He added: “The goal [Kane] was fantastic for us and we needed that goal. A guy like Harry who works for us, an incredible fighter. He was fantastic and very much deserved the goal but in the end.

“No, no, no. He [N’dombele] is training with the other boys. He didn’t feel confident [in his fitness].

“He’s had many injuries in the season, small and muscular injuries. He has a little bit of fear, doesn’t feel confident or ready to play. That’s a decision he made.”

Listen to the full Jose Mourinho interview above.