Jose Mourinho admits he is missing football but doesn’t want to be “selfish” and yearn for its return too soon, as the world continues to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
The Premier League joined most major leagues across Europe in shutting down in March, with government lockdown restrictions limiting people’s movement in an attempt to halt the spread of Covid-19.
Clubs remain determined to finish the season, with plans in place for a possible return to action in June, subject to government approval.
Tottenham have been attempting to keep their players fit during the lockdown by providing them with exercise bikes, with Mourinho hosting virtual training sessions using video call technology to monitor their progress.
“Even before the lockdown, (we) sought immediately to try and give the players the right conditions for a possible lockdown that appeared a few days or a couple of weeks later; equip their houses with equipment where they can train,” Mourinho told Sky Sports.
“The IT people organising everything in the training was hard work by everybody and I am really proud of the people and the players working really hard in very strange conditions.”
As well as keeping an eye on his players Mourinho has been doing his bit for the local community, delivering food parcels to local residents and transporting fresh fruit and vegetables grown at Tottenham’s training ground to the club’s stadium, where it is then packed and distributed to those in need.
Tottenham’s ultra-modern ground has also been converted into a temporary hospital, providing women’s outpatient services as well as a Covid-19 testing centre.
Mourinho is proud of what Tottenham are doing to help during the pandemic, while also downplaying his individual contribution to the cause.
“I feel so proud about what my club is doing, and I'm doing nothing,” he added. “The club is being absolutely amazing. I doubt people have an idea of what the club is doing and what is happening in this stadium.
“When you do good things, you don't need to make them public, you do it because you do it with your heart and that's what I feel the club is doing.”
Lockdown has not been all straightforward for Mourinho, who was reprimanded last month for going against government protocol and leading some players in a training session in a London park.
The former Chelsea and Manchester United boss, who acknowledged he was in the wrong, admits he is missing football but knows now is not yet the time for it to resume.
“I miss football but I try not to be selfish - just balanced and human," he said. “I prefer to say I miss our world - football is part of that - but we have to be patient and fight our fight. I prefer to wait for better days.
“I hope everybody is healthy and safe and I'm so sorry for families destroyed by bad news.”
If the Premier League does return this summer it is likely to be played behind closed doors, something which has caused much debate among supporters.
Mourinho, though, says he would be happy for games to take place at empty stadiums given the joy it will give to those watching on TV, who are in need a bit of positivity during this difficult time.
“As professionals and I imagine in the fans’ case, it is good to have a light, even if it is at the end of a dark tunnel, to imagine and to dream that one day we will have football and this stadium full again," he said.
“But if we come back behind closed doors, I like to think football behind closed doors is never closed doors, because cameras means millions and millions are watching that game. So one day if we walk into this empty stadium, it will not be empty at all.”