Jose Mourinho’s best quotes: ‘Special One’ to bring back swagger to Man Utd
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | May 27, 2016
Over the years, Manchester United have been known for having a justified arrogance, given all their success especially in the Sir Alex Ferguson era, with personnel such as Eric Cantona and Cristiano Ronaldo epitomising the club.
Under David Moyes and Louis van Gaal, their identity threatened to be wiped out, but the appointment of the self-imposed ‘Special One’ Jose Mourinho, and possible signing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic could see the Red Devils’ swagger restored.
In light of the Portuguese’s return to management, Coral pick out his best quotes since he was first announced to the British audience…
On becoming Chelsea boss
Of course, we all remember when Mourinho was first appointed Chelsea boss in 2004:
“Please don’t call me arrogant, but I’m European champion and I think I’m a special one.”
He did later point out that he said ‘a’ special one, not ‘the’ special one.
“If I wanted to have an easy job I would have stayed at Porto. Beautiful blue chair, the UEFA Champions League trophy, God, and after God, me.”
However, before becoming Blues boss, Mourinho first came to light in Britain following his over-exuberant celebrations after his Porto side knocked out Man Utd on their way to lifting the Champions League.
Mourinho and Ferguson are now well-known friends, but the Scot probably didn’t have a very good first impression of the then-cocky young boss after these words:
“I understand why [Ferguson] is a bit emotional. He has some of the top players in the world and they should be doing a lot better than that.
“You would be sad if your team gets as clearly dominated by opponents who have been built on 10 per cent of the budget.”
Over a decade later, however, Mourinho had more praising words for the legendary Scotsman when asked if he could replicate his 27 years of success:
“No, because it is impossible in football… Impossible. Modern football, impossible.”
Ferguson is not the first, nor last, head coach that Mourinho has riled, and he’ll certainly be looking forward to more battles with nemesis Arsene Wenger, who has never beaten a Mourinho-managed team.
“[Wenger] is a specialist in failure. I’m not. So if one supposes he’s right and I’m afraid of failure, it’s because I don’t fail many times.
“I’m not used to failing. But the reality is he’s a specialist because, eight years without a piece of silverware, that’s failure.”
Mourinho and Wenger are odds-on at 1/2 not to shake hands before any Man Utd v Arsenal match next season.
In what promises to be an intriguing 2016/17 Premier League season, with a whole host of top managers, there is one clash in particular that is a mouth-watering prospect, with new Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola.
After Guardiola’s then Barcelona side knocked out Mourinho’s Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals, the Portuguese said:
“One day I would like Guardiola to win this competition properly. If I tell UEFA what I really think and feel, my career would end now. Instead I will just ask a question to which I hope one day to get a response: Why?”
With tensions set to run high when the duo meet, Mourinho is a tempting 2/1 shout to be sent off in a Premier League match next season. Man Utd are the same price to finish above their local rivals.
Another manager that Mourinho enjoys to annoy is Rafael Benitez, but he may not get a chance to face the Spaniard until at least next season, with his Newcastle United side now in the Championship.
After Benitez won the Club World Cup with Inter Milan, a competition that they qualified for by winning the Champions League under Mourinho the previous season, the Portuguese said:
“I thought he was going to thank me for the title I gave him. Inter fans would tell you how they really feel about it.”
Inter are not the only club Benitez has followed Mourinho into managing, and in another dig at Benitiez, he said:
“I don’t want to win the Europa League. It would be a big disappointment for me. I don’t want my players to feel the Europa League is our competition.”
Football pundit Frank Rijkaard will certainly enjoy Mourinho’s return to the Premier League:
“My history as a manager cannot be compared with Frank Rijkaard’s history. He has zero trophies and I have a lot of them.”
On Van Gaal
Most recently, Mourinho was finally announced by the club as boss, though were the following quotes a dig at predecessor Van Gaal, who is reportedly friends with the 53-year-old?
“I think we can look at our club in two perspectives – one is the past three years and another is the history. I prefer to forget the last three years. I prefer to focus on the giant club I have in my hands now.
“What the fans are expecting me to say is that I want to win. The players need to hear that, but I think we can really, it’s not just to say it. I want to give what I have and what I don’t have. To give everything to go in the direction we want.”
Moving onto his future players, Mourinho will finally be able to work with Wayne Rooney, who he tried to sign before. After a bid was rejected, he said:
“[Rooney] will stay. He probably wants to leave for some reason but I believe he belongs to Man United, he belongs to Man United fans, he belongs to Old Trafford. I believe he is going to stay.
“But if at the end of the day Man United decide that he is to leave, then give me a call.”
Will Juan Mata stay? Or be sold again by Mourinho? After leaving the Spain winger out of a previous Chelsea squad, he said:
“I want to play Mata and Oscar, but Juan has to work and adapt to a certain style of play because I’m not ready to change Oscar’s position.
“Juan has to learn to play the way I want to play, to be more consistent.”
Encouraging reading for Adnan Januzaj, who was frozen out by Van Gaal. Mourinho previously said about the Kosovo-born Belgium youngster:
“Fantastic player, fantastic player. He’s not 18, he’s 25. This is the kind of player who is not 18, he’s 25. So mature, so mature, and so comfortable, very good.
“He’s a very good player with great conditions to have a long-term career at United. I don’t know the boy individually, I’m not in his ‘day by day’ but it looks like he has everything.’’
Not an Ander Herrea fan Jose? After an apparent dive by the Spanish midfielder against Chelsea last season:
“I am happy that it was not a Chelsea player because if it was a Chelsea player in this moment on Sky [Sports] it would be somebody’s crimes, would be cheating, would be the champions of the team without fair play and this kind of thing.
“Because it’s a Man United player tomorrow nobody remembers. So I’m happy with that. Conspiracy does not go on, I’m happy it’s not a Chelsea player.”
Because why not?
“Omelettes, eggs. No eggs, no omelettes. And it depends on the quality of the eggs in the supermarket.
“They are class one, two or three and some are more expensive than others and some give you better omelettes. When the class one eggs are not available you have a problem.”
And finally, something for Man Utd fans to chuckle about:
“I have a problem, which is I’m getting better at everything.”
Imagine press conferences next season if Zlatan joins too…