Mourinho congratulates Barca on title win

12 May 2013 09:46

Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho has congratulated Barcelona on their 22nd league title after Real's 1-1 draw with Espanyol on Saturday night sealed the Catalans fourth championship in five years.

"Firstly. I want to congratulate Barcelona, their coaches, players, directors and fans," he told Real's club website.

"They have just won a league that until now was ours and I think the least we can do is congratulate them."

Mourinho rested a host of first-team players from the start at the Cornella El-Prat with Friday's Copa del Rey final against Atletico Madrid in mind, but Real were still dealt a huge blow ahead of that clash when Raphael Varane limped off with a knee injury early on.

Mourinho is not expecting the young French international defender to be fit in less than a week's time.

"I don't want to say something before the medical services, but in principle it seems something serious that will make it impossible for him to play the cup final and the two or three games remaining until the end of the season."

Varane's injury though does reawaken the debate over Mourinho's decision to drop Pepe ever since the Portuguese international criticised him last week for not having enough respect for club captain Iker Casillas.

Pepe was again not involved in the squad against Espanyol and Mourinho hinted that either Ricardo Carvalho or Raul Albiol are likely to get the nod ahead of the 30-year-old against Atleti.

"It is my decision and that is the end of it. I am the coach and I do not need to justify anything. From the first till the last day I am the one who decides.

"Sometimes I can share the reasons for my decisions and other times not, I am left with this option. On Friday you will see who plays and it will always be my responsibility and decision.

"We have alternatives. It is a position in which we have people who are playing and are doing well. Obviously, we feel for Varane that he can't play in this game that everyone wants to play, but we are not going to dramatise the situation because we have solutions."

Source: AFP