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Tue, 2 June 2020

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Coronavirus: Sadiq Khan blasts Jose Mourinho after Spurs players train in park despite lockdown

Coronavirus: Sadiq Khan blasts Jose Mourinho after Spurs players train in park despite lockdown

Sadiq Khan criticised Jose Mourinho for running a training session during lockdown (PA)

2 min read

Sadiq Khan has criticised Spurs manager Jose Mourinho after he and his players were seen training in a park despite the coronavirus lockdown.

The London mayor accused the Premier League stars of setting a bad example to children and potentially spreading Covid-19 “inadvertently”.

Government guidelines state that people can only leave their homes for work, shopping for essentials and medicines or for one piece of exercise per day with members of their own household.

But pictures emerged of Mr Mourinho leading a training session on Hadley Common in Barnet north London, on Tuesday.

Meanwhile two other players, Davinson Sanchez and Ryan Sessegnon, were seen jogging side by side nearby.

And Tottenham defender Serge Aurier posted a video of himself on Instagram running closely alongside another person.

In response Mr Khan said: “My concern is people, particularly children who may support Spurs or follow football, will watch these images and say ‘if it’s OK for them, why isn’t it OK for me?’.

“The point I would make, with politeness and courtesy, is ask yourself a question; is what I’m doing really necessary?

“And the answer is no, I don’t think it is necessary to be training in proximity with another player who may be carrying the virus. 

“And what you’re doing is inadvertently, unintentionally, potentially spreading the virus.”

And Catherine West, Labour MP for Hornsey and Wood Green in North London, tweeted about the incident: “This is deeply irresponsible. 

“Many people look to football for their role models, and to have the governments crucial stay at home advice so clearly flaunted is a kick in the teeth.”

A Tottenham Hotspur spokesperson said: “All of our players have been reminded to respect social distancing when exercising outdoors. 

“We shall continue to reinforce this message.” 

Spurs have already come under pressure during the pandemic after announcing they would be putting non-playing staff on furlough.

They were criticised for applying to the Government’s job retention scheme to pay their employees wages despite the club announcing record profits of £69million during the last financial year. 

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