Arbeloa blames Real Madrid players for Mourinho exit

The right-back has launched an attack on the squad for not putting the club ahead of their own interests this season, with the Portuguese boss set for a return to Chelsea
Alvaro Arbeloa has slammed his Real Madrid team-mates, claiming they are responsible for Jose Mourinho's exit.

The Portuguese won La Liga last season but has endured a turbulent campaign marred by alleged feuds with several members of his squad, including iconic goalkeeper Iker Casillas, and will return to Chelsea imminently.

Barcelona coasted to the league title, Madrid were knocked out of the Champions League and then lost to Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey final, all of which culminated in the announcement this would be Mourinho's last season in charge of the club.

And after he ended his tenure at the Santiago Bernabeu with a 4-2 win over Osasuna, Arbeloa hit out at the Blancos squad for contributing to his departure.

"The responsibility is everyone's," the 30-year-old told reporters. "We lacked maturity in difficult situations.

"Mourinho has always put Real Madrid ahead of him. He often damaged his image for the sake of this club, but the players cannot say the same. Starting with me, I look first for myself, then the club, like many others.

"It's a shame we could not have won more titles. Mourinho has won wherever he has been and with perhaps the best squad he has lead, won the fewest things.

"We lost hope of catching Barcelona after the set-backs of the first month. By September we never believed we could win, with the gap being so many points. It was a shame not to have fought until the end.

"I think it has been a turbulent season, especially at the end. There were many who did not agree with the coach and while that was respectable, we should have put the fans first in these three years."

Mourinho leaves Madrid having lifted La Liga, the Copa del Rey and Supercopa in his three years in the Spanish capital.