Spurs have been far from convincing in recent weeks, and the dropped points against the struggling Magpies saw them miss the opportunity to break into the top four.
There are rumours of a split in the dressing room, with Mourinho said to have fallen out with a number of big names.
When asked why his side appeared unable to hold onto a lead after they conceded yet another late equaliser, Mourinho replied: “Same coach, different players”, suggesting that he feels the blame lies with those out on the pitch rather than him.
This has provoked an angry reaction from the squad, who feel Mourinho should take his fair share of blame for their defensive woes.
Mourinho’s future at Spurs is very much up in the air, but he is in danger of completely alienating himself from his team with his recent comments.
It is widely felt that if Mourinho fails to guide the side into the Champions League next season he will be sacked by chairman Daniel Levy in the summer.
But winning the Carabao Cup could save him, with Spurs looking for their first piece of silverware since 2008.
It means the next few weeks will prove crucial for Mourinho, and he will be desperate to get off to a good start with victory over his former club on Sunday.
[email protected] (Alex Milne)