Jose Mourinho has made a thinly-veiled dig at Antonio Conte‘s Chelsea side, saying the champions won the title last season playing defensive football.

Conte was named as Mourinho’s permanent successor at Chelsea last summer before the Italian, managing in his first season in England, led the west London side to the top-flight title with a record-breaking 30 victories.

Mourinho this week insisted his Chelsea side that won the title in 2015 was more attacking than Conte’s team, with the Manchester United manager now claiming the Blues played negatively to win the title last term.

“We try to play the best we can,” Mourinho told reporters on Friday.

“We know that if you look in a pragmatic way, you see the last winners of the Premier League, the last winners of the Premier League, they did not play attacking football. They played defensive football and counter-attack football.

“So according to the results, that is the way to win the Premier League.”

United sit top of the Premier League standings going into this weekend’s round of matches following big wins against West Ham and Swansea and a 2-0 home victory against Leicester last Saturday.

The Red Devils have scored 10 goals and haven’t conceded once this season, although they now face a tough test when the club travel to face Stoke on Saturday evening.

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While admitting there is a time and a place for defensive football, Mourinho insisted he always sets up his team to play in an attacking manner.

He added: “We try to play according to the qualities of our players. We try to play positive, we try to play good, but we try to win.

“If one day to win we have to play defensive football, we have to do it. And if we go to Stoke and Stoke in some moments of the match, they put us under pressure and they are dominant, we have to be humble and we have to be pragmatic and we have to face the reality.”