Public Mourinho apology for referee Kevin Friend

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has issued a public and private apology to referee Kevin Friend after he heavily criticised his performance despite the Blue strolling to a 3-0 success over Championship Watford on Sunday, Sky Sports is reporting.

The Portuguese was incensed once again at the failure of a match official to award his side a penalty when Diego Costa’s shot hit Craig Cathcart on the hands – despite Loic Remy firing in the rebound to make it 2-0 to the hosts.

Mourinho also chose to bombard referee Phil Dowd with criticism after he decided to not give a spot kick when the ball struck Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen on the arm during Chelsea’s 5-3 defeat at white Hart Lane on New Year’s Day.

However on this occasion he sought Friend after post-match interviews to privately apologise to the official, before turning to television cameras to do the same thing.

He said: “We had a big penalty in our favour but I was speaking to the referee and I want to apologise for my comments about him earlier on television.

“What he did was great refereeing. He saw that it was a penalty and was going to give it but he saw that the ball was going to Remy, and he waited a couple of seconds.

“He said if Remy did not control the ball or fired the ball over the bar, he would have definitely given the penalty. So I have apologised to him personally and I am apologising now.”

The Blues’ boss has recently been complaining of a ‘campaign’ against his side – blaming pundits and other coaches for constantly talking about incidents involving his side in a negative light which ultimately influences referees on match days.

Despite his complaining, Mourinho’s side are still joint top of the league, in the Capital One Cup semi-finals, The FA Cup fourth round and Champions League knock out stages.

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