Mourinho opens up on Bale futu...


Mourinho opens up on Bale future and Rashford penalties

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Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho insists no decision has been made regarding Gareth Bale's future at the club. 

The 31-year old is spending his second spell at the club, this time on loan from Real Madrid.

Bale's loan spell is believed to be costing Spurs a total of £20million (€22.5m) between his wages and a fee.

Despite the expense, the Wales international has failed to set the world alight the second time around in North London.

He's played just 160 Premier League minutes, and was left on the bench as Tottenham were held to a 1-1 draw by Fulham earlier in the week.

Talk has begun to circulate that Spurs will be quite happy not to make Bale's deal a permanent one.

But speaking ahead of Sunday's trip to Sheffield United, Mourinho insisted that wasn't the case, "There was not even a second of discussion about that.

"Gareth is a player on loan until the end of the season. Not one second of discussion.

"We are speaking about, of course, Gareth, himself, Real Madrid, Tottenham, but I promise you, not one second of discussion."

Asked why Bale hasn't been a regular Premier League starter, Mourinho said, "Of course you know that he arrived injured. And he was injured before, I believe, the first month.

"And then, step by step, Europa League matches were helping him to get his condition. Premier League of course… Europa League group phase is a different level than the Premier League.

"The knock-out is a different story. But the group phase is a different intensity, a different rhythm, a different quality.

"So in the Premier League, he didn’t play many minutes. Then another small injury at Stoke where he was having a good first half. And now coming, not an easy process.

"Everybody knew that in the past couple of seasons, in Madrid, they were not easy for him. So let’s go, step by step, and try to get the best out of him."

Meanwhile, Mourinho was also asked about Marcus Rashford's recent comments about the Portuguese manager's tenure at Old Trafford.

"I remember when Jose was manager," the United forward said, "There were five or six times I can remember where I should have had a penalty.

"José ended up saying to me: 'If you are not savvy about the way you do it, then you are not going to [get] give[n] it.'

"After that, we started to get a few penalties. It was something that in terms of development you have to learn that and understand it."

Mourinho says he didn't want to throw petrol on the fire ahead of Sunday's game at Anfield, but explained, "Look, first of all, Liverpool vs Manchester United is a big match that doesn't need me to make it bigger or doesn't need me to do any headlines before such a big match that I know means so much for both clubs and supporters' population so I'll leave comments for later not for now.

"But if you feel the need to write something about it, do it in a very simple way.

"Stats, go to Opta, stats, go to my history as a manager in my more or less 10 Premier League seasons. Compare numbers and take your conclusions."

In response, Opta themselves clarified that under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Rashford has won six penalties - three times as many as he won in 81 appearances under Jose Mourinho.

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Gareth Bale Jose Mourinho Manchester United Marcus Rashford Spurs Tottenham Tottenham Hotspur

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