Football: Medical duo's removal from bench not permanent, says Jose Mourinho

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho during a press conference.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho during a press conference. PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (AFP) - Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho on Friday confirmed reports that team doctor Eva Carneiro and head physiotherapist Jon Fearn have been removed from match-day duties, but said it was not permanent.

The Portuguese was angered when Carneiro and Fearn ran on to treat Eden Hazard during last weekend's 2-2 draw with Swansea City, which temporarily left Chelsea with nine players due to Thibaut Courtois' earlier dismissal.

Reports emerged on Tuesday that Carneiro and Fearn would no longer attend matches or training sessions, but while Mourinho said they would not be on the bench for Sunday's game at Manchester City, it was not a permanent move.

"Jon Fearn and Dr Carneiro will not be on the bench, but it doesn't mean Sunday is the rest of our season or our careers," Mourinho told journalists at his weekly press conference. "They won't be on the bench on Sunday. That's clear, it's my decision, my responsibility, but it doesn't mean they won't be in the future."

Mourinho did not disclose why Carneiro and Fearn had been sidelined for the trip to the Etihad Stadium, but said that he had a "very, very good relationship" with his medical department.

Speaking after the Swansea game, Mourinho said that Carneiro and Fearn had been "impulsive and naive" by going on to treat Hazard and said their behaviour showed that they did not "understand the game".

His conduct has been criticised by several groups representing medical professionals working in English football, including the Premier League Doctors' Group and the Football Medical Association.