Mourinho: Victory at Stoke means more than three points

Jose Mourinho believes Chelsea's 2-0 Premier League victory at Stoke City on Monday was worth more than three points to his side.

Captain John Terry headed Chelsea in front from a Cesc Fabregas corner inside two minutes before the Spaniard added his own name to the scoresheet with a scuffed effort 12 minutes from time.

The result saw Chelsea re-establish a three-point lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League ahead of a busy Christmas schedule and Mourinho could not have been happier with the performance of his players.

"These victories mean more than three points, to win and get three points the players need the right spirit and mentality, to win here they must be a really very good team with the capacity to adapt to Stoke's style of play," he told BBC Sport.

Mourinho appeared incensed when Phil Bardsley lunged into a challenge on Eden Hazard during the first half, escaping only with a yellow card before avoiding punishment for a tug on Diego Costa, but the Chelsea boss had no complaints about referee Neil Swarbrick.

"At that time I felt the tackle was a bad one, but if it was a bad one it was the only one," he continued. "If the referee decided not to give a red and lost control of the game it is a problem but he kept control and we reacted well.

"At the end of the day it was a fair game, a typical English winter game."

Chelsea next host fourth-placed West Ham in the Premier League on Friday and Mourinho is wary of the in-form men from Upton Park.

"Now we have to focus on the three matches we still have until the end of this period," he added. "Playing against Big Sam [Allardyce] is a hard job for us, we have to cope with it.

"The three-point lead we have is a little advantage, it is a little pillow we have to protect us - we go home happy and pleased with what we did."