Chelsea announced on Thursday that they had parted company with Mourinho for the second time “by mutual consent” after a disastrous start to the season, with the club’s technical director Michael Emenalo later confirming that “palpable discord” had developed between the manager and his players.
And while Ba — who scored 14 goals in 49 appearances in all competitions for Chelsea during Mourinho’s first season back at Stamford Bridge — still holds his former boss in high regard, he admits he found him to be a demanding manager who has little time for players who lack confidence.
“We’ve seen it in the past,” Ba told French radio station RMC. “It’s very tiring — very exhausting — because he demands a huge amount. He wants to try to push his players to their limit to know what they have. That’s also one of his methods of working.
“He’s not someone who’s there to give confidence to the players — he’s there to get what he can out of them. And if a player lacks confidence, it’s not him who’ll give it back to them. He’s going to rely on someone else who is confident. If you don’t have confidence all he’s going to do is to put you on the bench.”
Speculation surrounding Mourinho’s future intensified in the wake of Chelsea’s defeat to Leicester City on Monday when the Portuguese accused his players of betraying his work on the pitch by not adhering to his tactical instructions.