Jose Mourinho appears to have spelled out exactly what he expects from his Tottenham players with a comment on a post about Ben Davies on Instagram.
Left-back Davies had been called up for Wales’ upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Belgium and Czech Republic.
But the 27-year-old has had to withdraw, with Wales assistant manager Robert Page saying he had suffered a “significant injury” while playing for Spurs in the last week.
The club’s official account announced the news on Instagram, and Mourinho seemed to suggest Davies played through the pain in Spurs’ 2-0 win against Aston Villa on Sunday.
He posted: “When a player plays injured to help his team recover from two bad defeats, this can happen. A man, a team player,” along with a thumbs up emoji.
Mourinho has hinted on more than one occasion this season that some of his players need to improve their attitudes.
And some could interpret his reaction to Davies as a sly dig at his international teammate Gareth Bale.
Mourinho admitted earlier in the campaign that he was “surprised” when Bale claimed he was not fit to play in an FA Cup tie against Everton.
He said at the time: “I was a little bit surprised by him wanting to have a scan because he was not comfortable with some muscular area.
“So he didn’t train on Monday, and then on Tuesday he trained with the team, but I was informed that his desire would be to work with the sports science for a couple of days to strengthen that area.
“That’s the reason why he’s not here.”
Spurs eased a bit of the growing pressure on Mourinho’s shoulders with the win against Villa at the weekend.
But they will be expected to get another comfortable three points after the international break when they face Newcastle on April 4.