Get breaking news alerts from myKhel

Notification Settings X
Time Settings
Done
Clear Notification X
Do you want to clear all the notifications from your inbox?
Settings X

We were sweet enemies - Mourinho salutes old rival Wenger

Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger

London, February 22: Jose Mourinho has paid tribute to Arsene Wenger, describing the Frenchman and Alex Ferguson as "sweet enemies".

Mourinho was involved in a fierce rivalry with the Arsenal and Manchester United managers during his two spells at Chelsea and then again with Wenger after taking over the reins at Old Trafford in 2016.

Mourinho's first stint at Chelsea started the season after Arsenal's legendary 2003-04 campaign, which saw them lift the Premier League trophy without suffering defeat – an achievement that saw them christened 'the Invincibles'.

Mourinho makes peace with Wenger

The Portuguese, who has been out of a job since being dismissed by United in December, looks back fondly on his battles with Wenger and Ferguson and believes the former Arsenal boss deserves more credit for guiding the Gunners through that unbeaten season.

"He is a very intelligent person and one of the best managers in the history of football," he told @LaureusSport after Wenger was awarded the Laureus World Sports Awards' Lifetime Achievement award.

"I arrived in England and I found 'the Invincibles' and I found Manchester United and Sir Alex Ferguson very much hurt by that Arsenal season.

"And we were like a third force coming. Chelsea had a great desire to be champions for the first time in so many years. So, of course, it was the confrontation of forces and you can imagine that Sir Alex, Wenger and myself we were fighting for the same. We were like, I like to say in football 'sweet enemies'.

"My feeling is where are the next 'Invincibles'? Where are they? Who did it again? Who made people forget that he was the manager of the invincible team? Lots of philosophies, lots of talk, lots of PR. Football today is a lot about this, but results, and who did better than him?"

Mourinho and Wenger were involved in a number of heated exchanges with each other over the years, but Mourinho insists it has done nothing to diminish his respect for the 69-year-old.

He added: "I really enjoyed the competition but there were some episodes along the road that I don't like to say I regret because this is really part of our history and we cannot go back and delete them.

"But what I can say is that the real respect is always there."

For Quick Alerts
Subscribe Now
For Quick Alerts
ALLOW NOTIFICATIONS
For Daily Alerts

Story first published: Friday, February 22, 2019, 5:41 [IST]
Other articles published on Feb 22, 2019
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. This includes cookies from third party social media websites and ad networks. Such third party cookies may track your use on Mykhel sites for better rendering. Our partners use cookies to ensure we show you advertising that is relevant to you. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on Mykhel website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. Learn more