Mourinho urges Southgate to name and shame rivals in veiled Guardiola dig

Jose Mourinho has appealed to Gareth Southgate to call out managers who apply pressure on him in order to withdraw their stars from England duty.

Mourinho's comments come after Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling withdrew from the Three Lions squad earlier this week – only for Pep Guardiola to confirm he has returned to first-team training in time for the clash with Spurs on Saturday evening.

Sterling also pulled out of the England squad in October with a hamstring injury but was named in City's starting XI for their first game after the international break, scoring the winner in the 1-0 victory over Arsenal.

And Mourinho is less than impressed by what he sees as below-the-belt activity when it comes to managers and the national team.

“Gareth Southgate, I read, supposedly told that some club managers put pressure on the players not to play for the national team," said Mourinho.

“And because of that he feels sometimes the need to call club managers to cool down the emotions and control a difficult situation for him.

“I would like him to say who. I would like him to say which are the coaches who put pressure on the players not to play.

Are Premier League managers engaging in underhand dealings to get their stars out of England duty? Have your say here.

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“And I would like him to say which are the coaches that he calls and speaks on the phone with them. He has the right, the power to call the players he wants.

“He wants to win matches, especially after a defeat the next match, even being a dead rubber, is an important match. I sympathise totally with that.

“But of course we all know that Sterling is going to play for City against us.

"When Eric Dier left the national team injured in the past month, he didn’t play two matches for Tottenham.

“He didn’t play the Premier League match and the Europa League match. He needed a couple of weeks to recover. And Raheem is going to play.

“These are the little details that I think Gareth should explain to us all.”

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