Jose Mourinho's Incredible Time-Wasting Tactics Against Liverpool In 2014
Jose Mourinho is an absolute expert in the art of 'shithousery' and one of the most high-profile occasions came on 27 April 2014 when they blew the title race wide open with a 2-0 win at Anfield.
With John Terry, Eden Hazard and Petr Cech out, Chelsea actually fielded a pretty below par team for the game, including 21-year old Mo Salah, 20-year old Tomas Kalas and 41-year old Mark Schwarzer, who was actually barely tested in the game and kept a clean sheet.
The Blues completely parked the bus and capitalised on errors at the end of both halves - THAT slip from Steven Gerrard and the worst corner in football history from Iago Aspas - to score breakaway goals and come away with a shock victory.
Time-wasting was central to their display, so much so that Mourinho even devised a tactical plan to run down the clock early on.
In a brilliant inside story of that memorable day from Miguel Delaney, Schwarzer revealed all during an interview with The Independent.
"I remember, for the very first goal-kick of the game, Jose had instructions for me and Branislav Ivanovic," Schwarzer said.
"He said to me, 'you go to the ball, and Brana, you go as far as you can to the touchline. Mark, set it up as if you're going to play it out at the back, then Brana, you put your hand up and say you'll take it. Be as far away as you possibly can and then casually walk over and take it.
'"That was the ploy, to slow it right down. Because they wanted the game to be high-tempo, wanted to catch the opposition out, wanted to bombard them, like they did all season very successfully. So the instruction was to play to the limit until the referee cautioned you"
It's also said in the piece that Mourinho specifically told his group of players he wanted "at least two bookings for time-wasting before half-time".
So many amusing anecdotes in @MiguelDelaney's inside story from the 2014 meeting between Liverpool and Chelsea and a reminder of how great Mourinho could be. This was my personal favourite, as he attempted to completely disrupt Liverpool's rapid starts https://t.co/QBuNv0nEoZ pic.twitter.com/0hPDJvo1wu- Josh Wright (@_WrightJosh) April 12, 2019
He did not get that but the gamesmanship rattled Liverpool and threw them off their game. Brendan Rodgers' side complained about it just three minutes in and Mourinho himself then held the ball behind his body to delay time six minutes into the game when it had gone out for a throw-in.
Writing in his autobiography, Gerrard admitted that both he and Rodgers were "infuriated" by Chelsea's time-wasting.
Liverpool would then infamously throw away a 3-0 lead to draw 3-3 at Crystal Palace a week later to further hand the initiative to Manchester City and allow Manuel Pellegrini's side to lift the title on the final day.