Jose Mourinho: Tottenham head coach defends Harry Kane over Brighton penalty incident

Tottenham head coach Jose Mourinho has launched a fierce defence of Harry Kane following suggestions the striker was “clever” in winning a crucial penalty against Brighton.

Kane was awarded a penalty in the first half of Tottenham’s 2-1 win on Sunday, after colliding with Brighton midfielder Adam Lallana.

Referee Graham Scott initially awarded Tottenham a free-kick but VAR Jonathan Moss reviewed the incident and changed the decision to a penalty, after replays showed the collision had occurred inside the Brighton area.

Kane scored the penalty and defended his actions after the match, describing it as a “50-50 decision”, and Mourinho has hit back at suggestions the striker was “clever” and “streetwise” in winning the penalty.

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“You are confused because you could be speaking about some Manchester United players, you could be speaking about some Manchester City players, you could be speaking about some Liverpool players, you could be speaking about some Chelsea players,” said Mourinho.

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“And you are speaking about Harry Kane? Who was in a position to control the ball in a dangerous position and Lallana comes with a very reckless action and committed a foul.

“Why are you speaking about being clever or not being clever? Being clever is to hold the ball, and shoot and score. It was a foul.”

Mourinho added: “Why are you speaking about us? Speak about Liverpool, speak about Manchester City, speak about Manchester United.

“Speak about these penalties where you see the clever guy… when somebody comes and blows, they fall on the floor.

“Don’t speak about Harry Kane.”

Tottenham travel to face Ludogorets in the Europa League on Thursday, having already beaten another Bulgarian side, Lokomotiv Plovdiv, in the second qualifying round for the competition.

Spurs are currently second in Group J, three points behind Antwerp after losing 1-0 to the Belgian side last Thursday, and Mourinho has warned his players they face another tough test in Razgrad.

“I expect a difficult match. We already played against probably the second-best team in Bulgaria… looking at the table, I think Lokomotiv has to be the second-best team, and it was very difficult for us,” said Mourinho.

“So we can image that Ludogorets has an even bigger potential, nine consecutive league titles is not for everyone. It is for them, Bayern Munich and maybe Paris Saint-Germain, so we respect them.

“The fact that we only have three points, this double fixture against Ludogorets, it is very important for us that we have four or six points. We need points and we go to Bulgaria with this in mind.”

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