By Pranav Shahaney

9th Jul, 2021 | 11:45am

Jose Mourinho: Jordan Pickford was nervous and needs to relax

Jose Mourinho believes Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford needs to cool down and not be nervous ahead of England’s Euro 2020 final against Italy.

Pickford kept five clean sheets in a row before being undone by a spectacular Mikkel Damsgaard free-kick in the semi-final.

Prior to that he also made an error that nearly gifted Martin Braithwaite an early goal, but his positioning made up for it.

Discussing Pickford’s performance against Denmark, Mourinho told talkSPORT, “I think he was the only one who showed signs of not being at the top of his game, being nervous, that urgency of playing immediately.

“Even when the ball was in his hands he was always in a hurry. I think the guy has to relax, has to cool down.

“The most important thing with goalkeepers is not to make the basic mistakes, what we call the silly mistakes.

“Keep it simple. If you feel pressure, don’t try to play from the back. It’s better to kick long. Don’t try to create problems for your own team.”

Pretty bizarre

For someone who’s spent two decades in the game, Mourinho seems to be overreacting to one minor error that didn’t even result in a goal being conceded.

In today’s game, keepers are told to play out from the back even if it leads to the occasional error as the rewards are much higher than the risks.

Mourinho could be seen as a manager that’s failed to adapt to the modern game, which is why he prefers Pickford kicking it long.

It’s bizarre to even suggest that he was nervous as before the tournament, there had been calls for Gareth Southgate to drop him as his first-choice keeper.

He knew that from minute one all eyes were going to be on him, waiting to see him make a mistake and slam him for it. However, he came through the group stages unscathed and did not even come close to conceding a goal.

Even against Denmark, he did not have a clear sight of the goal until it was too late, and it’s hard to fault him for that. He surely would’ve started moving towards the ball earlier and make a routine save as some pundits were claiming it to be.

We think Mourinho is completely off in his assessment of the player and in our eyes, along with Raheem Sterling, he’s been England’s player of the tournament.

In other Everton news, Euro club expects official bid for £13m defender, agent in talks with Everton – reports

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