Mourinho delighted by Tottenham's 'great evolution' ahead of one-year anniversary

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Jose Mourinho Tottenham 2020-21Getty

Jose Mourinho has praised Tottenham for their "great evolution" as a team since his arrival, as the Portuguese closes in on his one-year anniversary at the club next month.

The 57-year-old took the reins in North London following Mauricio Pochettino's exit last November and has overseen a gradual upturn in form with a string of eye-catching performances.

Despite having missed out on Champions League football last season - only one year on from reaching the final - Spurs have started strongly across the 2020-21 campaign, with several sizeable results - including a 6-1 drubbing of Mourinho's former club Manchester United - indicating their growth as a collective side.

It is that increased unity, led by lynchpin players up front such as Harry Kane and Son Heung-min and aided by the morale-boost return of Gareth Bale on loan from Real Madrid, that has impressed the manager most as he closes in on a dozen months in charge.

Speaking ahead of his side's Premier League clash with Brighton on Sunday, Mourinho stressed that the shared belief of his squad, aided by the performances of their major stars, has helped reaffirm their togetherness, through good and bad.

"Nothing [has] changed for me, everything is the same since day one," he stated. "For me, always the team is the most important thing.

"The team needs the big talents but the big talents need the team to perform for them and I think at this moment, our team is [that] team.

"Even in the worst moment against West Ham or after defeat against Everton, our team was a team.

"[They] reacted as a team, lived the days after as a team, prepared the next challenge as a team.

"I am really happy because one year more or less since we arrived, there was, in our opinion, a great evolution in the team at every level."

Mourinho also admitted that free-scoring triumphs such of those against United are no better than results like his side's narrow victory over Burnley last weekend, noting that a win is a win.

"Different matches, different histories, same satisfaction when you win the three points," he added.

"I prefer to win three points playing very well, but what is playing very well? It can be playing incredible, attacking, fluid, exciting football. It can also be the sort of football we had to play against Burnley.