Jose Mourinho has insisted that the team he is building in his second stint as Chelsea manager cannot be compared to the side that won an array of trophies during his initial spell at the club.
Mourinho’s first Blues side possessed power and presence as they claimed two Premier League titles and three domestic cup competitions, with the core of that side continuing to deliver trophies for the club after his departure in 2007.
The Portuguese’s team today, however, has a very different make up to it, and Mourinho has made a point of reminding observers exactly that.
“It is not the same team [as the first time at Chelsea],” he said at a news conference. “It’s not good to look back and compare. It’s not good to try and compare when you are not the same. We are trying to build a team with the profile of players.
“It will be different and if you try to make the same team with players from a completely different profile, you will never arrive where you want to be.
“My team is for history and my memory and Chelsea supporters. In my time [that team] gave titles and after I left they still gave titles, but that team is over. This is new and very different to the team we had before.”
Meanwhile, Mourinho has warned his players that they should not take West Ham lightly when they travel to Upton Park on Saturday.
The Portuguese also said that they need to improve their away form if they are to mount a title challenge, having claimed just one victory from their five games on the road in the Premier League this season.
“We have to do better, I agree, although we have had very difficult matches away [from home],” Mourinho said. “Our fixtures, until now were not the easiest, especially when we speak about matches away. We played already against two title contenders, and Everton and Newcastle -- always difficult stadiums.
“Maybe they are not teams who fight for the title, but they fight for the second block of teams. So we had difficult matches, but we want to do better and we need to get more points from the next five matches away than we did in the first five matches.
“West Ham are a Premier League team and every team show week after week they can shock or beat the top teams. That’s why [Manchester] United lost matches against smaller teams, [Manchester] City did it, we did it, Tottenham did it. Can West Ham beat us? Why not, they can beat us, yes.”
Mourinho went on to suggest that he expects a negative approach from West Ham on Saturday, with Hammers boss Sam Allardyce having started matches without a lead striker in recent weeks.
“Many teams in the Premier League are playing very defensive football, are thinking of trying to stop the opponent to play and after that to see what happens,” he said.
“That is giving some good results to some different teams against the teams considered to be the best in the competition. No criticism about that. They are defensive and they give difficult matches to the big teams.
“That’s why everybody is losing points. That’s why nobody is really dominant in this league. That’s why everybody keeps losing points but keeps in contact in the top part of the table.”
Mourinho confirmed that striker Fernando Torres will miss Saturday’s game as he continues to recover from injury, but Ashley Cole is in the squad as he battles back from a rib problem.