Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has laughed off Roberto Mancini’s claims that he built the Internazionale side that the Portuguese led to Champions League glory, reports the Independent.
There has been animosity in the air between the duo in the build up to the Champions League last-16 clash between the west Londoners and Galatasaray tonight which stems from their spat in 2008.
Mancini was sacked as Inter Milan boss despite winning the title three years in a row and was replaced by Mourinho. However, the Special One went on to win an unprecedented treble with the Serie A side, capped by a Champions League crown. But Mancini is evidently still bitter that a team he believes he helped create were victorious but he receives no credit.
“Mourinho won the Champions League because he took a good team. He took a team that, like Manchester City, I had built. A team that had a strong mentality. When I went to Inter, they played very bad football and we changed this,” declared the Italian.
But Mourinho was quick to point out in his pre match press conference that it was he was responsible for brining in the new recruits that paved the way for success on the continent, taking a further swipe at Mancini’s somewhat silly suggestion.
“It’s funny, it’s funny. It’s funny because my team in the final had Lucio, Thiago Motta, Diego Milito, Samuel Eto’o, Goran Pandev and Wesley Sneijder. From 11 players, he didn’t work with six of them. So he made a five-a-side team because I played with only five players from his team,” insisted Mourinho.
In truth Mancini’s comments are, as Mourinho suggests, laughable. Although Mancini laid the foundations, it was Mourinho’s astute additions that transformed Inter’s team from a dominant force in Italy into European heavyweights.