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Mourinho regrets 'negative episodes' with Wenger

Arsene Wenger was infamously described as a "specialist in failure" by Jose Mourinho, who says he regrets his rows with the Frenchman.

NEWS
News 27 Apr 2018, 20:03 IST
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Jose Mourinho with Arsene Wenger
Jose Mourinho with Arsene Wenger

Jose Mourinho regrets some of the much-referenced rows he had with departing Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

The veteran Frenchman announced last week he would conclude his near 22-year stay in north London at the end of this season.

Mourinho described Wenger as a "specialist in failure" eight years into a trophy-less spell at Emirates Stadium and they have clashed frequently throughout the Portuguese's time in English football.

Wenger's comments about Chelsea's transfer policy in 2005 also led to Mourinho calling his rival a "voyeur" in one of the more unseemly episodes between the pair.

The managers have since patched up their differences, with the Manchester United boss even suggesting they could become friends, and Mourinho feels some of the spats between himself and Wenger over the years crossed the line.

"There were little things it would obviously be better without - some gestures, some words," Mourinho told reporters ahead of Sunday's Premier League game against Arsenal at Old Trafford.

"It's obviously better without. I feel better now without [insults]. When I arrived in England in 2004, they were champions, and famous champions - the 'Invincibles'.

"Then I arrive [at Chelsea], the next few years it was with them [battles for the title].

"It was an amazing team. So thank you very much for that. They pushed us to the limits. The two matches we played at Highbury, that amazing old stadium, were unforgettable. So thank you, thank you so much for that.

"Do I regret the little negative episodes? Yes, and I'm sure he does too."

Wenger and Mourinho have won three Premier League titles apiece and the Portuguese suggested Arsenal helped push United to success under the great Alex Ferguson, another who had regular public arguments with the 68-year-old.

"I always feel the biggest rivals are our biggest friends because they're the ones who push us to the limits," added Mourinho. "And I think Manchester United fans know that until about 2004 it was between United and Arsenal, Sir Alex and Mr Wenger.

"I think these great teams Arsenal had, the great fights with Man United, made Man United better and better. I hope they [United supporters] have that feeling and a good reaction, or at least not a bad one at all. I think he'll feel the respect we have."

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