Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has hit back after a week of being criticised for his treatment of club doctor Eva Carneiro.
Speaking at a press conference at the Blues' Cobham training base, Mourinho defended his decision to criticise Carneiro and Jon Fearn, both of whom ran onto the pitch to treat a stricken Eden Hazard in the final minutes of the 2-2 draw against Swansea.
He said in a statement: "First of all I want to say I have a fantastic medical department led by Dr Paco Biosca, I have a good relationship with them.
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"They tell me they have never been praised as much as they have done by me in the last couple of years. Jon Fearn and Dr Carneiro will not be on the bench on Sunday but that doesn't mean they cannot be in the future.
“We have disagreements during this period, we need disagreements to improve. We work together. Your question about the bench. For some people it’s important. For others, it’s not... It’s my decision.
“I have seven assistants, only four can go on bench. Seven kitmen, only two. Medical, only two on bench.”
Asked about whether he regretted his comments, Mourinho said: "The game is emotional, football is football. The match is the match. Everything after the match can be different, especially after the meeting I had with my medical dept yesterday.
“If somebody thinks that a disagreement between manager and medical can affect team, they don’t have a clue.”
Carneiro and Fearn were blasted by Mourinho for running on to the pitch in the dying minutes of the draw against Garry Monk's side to treat Eden Hazard - despite the fact they were summoned by referee Michael Oliver.
Mourinho described the pair as 'naive' and 'impulsive' for the move which meant Hazard had to leave the pitch, forcing Chelsea to defend a late set piece with just nine players following the earlier dismissal of goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.
Carneiro has since been told that she will no longer be on the bench during matchdays but will remain employed by the club, and Mourinho is facing increased criticism for his actions.
The issue is said to have escalated after Carneiro posted a message of thanks for the support she received on her Facebook page, which is said to have angered Mourinho.
The Chelsea boss has been heavily criticised for his comments after the game by the Premier League's club doctor's board, while Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger and Professor Jiri Dvorak, who is the chief medical officer for FIFA have also backed Carneiro over the incident.
“In medical aspects, in medical diagnosis, the manager has nothing to say,” Professor Dvorak explained. “This is our professional law and our ethical duty to look after the players’ health.
Chelsea and Mourinho will be hoping to put the incident behind them when they take on Manchester City this weekend.