Mourinho disappointed with Chelsea star's 'cautious' display in England's draw with Scotland
Jose Mourinho has criticised Chelsea star Reece James’ “cautious” performance in England’s goalless draw with Scotland on Friday.
The 21-year-old made his debut in the Euro 2020 after being left out in the first group win over Croatia last week.
It is safe to say that he did not really made the most of the opportunity.
While his Chelsea teammate Billy Gilmour dominated in midfield and was eventually named man of the match, James hardly had any influence on the game beyond the halfway line.
Mourinho, in particular, seemed to be disappointed with James and the other England fullback Luke Shaw.
“I feel the intention from Gareth [Southgate] was correct — [having] a left-footed left-back in Luke Shaw and an offensive player [on the right] in James,” the former Chelsea boss told talkSPORT.
“The intention was that [he] really wanted them to go.
“But in reality, I just remember James arriving at the edge of the box and hitting a shot from Harry Kane’s pass.
“I didn’t see any cross, progression, or overlapping [runs] from them.
“They were fine, positionally cautious and didn’t make defensive mistakes, but they should [have given] a little bit more.”
James attempted just one cross throughout the game which is disappointingly low for a player with his crossing ability.
For comparison, Scotland’s Andy Robertson attempted 11 crosses, although only three found his teammates.
Robertson likely had more freedom to roam, though, having played in a back-three system, compared to James who played in a back-four.
England’s having two No.8s in Mason Mount and Kalvin Phillips who played further forward might have also limited James and Shaw’s freedom to attack even more.