Jose Mourinho's second stint as Chelsea manager witnessed the loss of multiple promising talents. Former Blues assistant manager Eddie Newton has now shed light on what really happened during the period.
"For me, I think Salah and De Bruyne wasn’t about talent. It was a personality clash [with Jose Mourinho]. I just didn’t think it was working at the time. I think they were more than good enough, but it was the manager who didn’t see eye-to-eye with them, so it wasn’t going to work."
Newton also went on to add:
"For Lukaku, he wasn’t ready at the time and I don’t care what anyone says. He just wasn’t ready to be the main No.9 up front and carry that platform like Didier [Drogba]. He was always going to be compared to Didier and it wasn’t fair to him at that time. It was different situations for different players."
The former assistant manager also commented on the performances of Salah, de Bruyne and Lukaku when they left Chelsea on loan. The trio made their respective moves after struggling to get opportunities under Jose Mourinho.
"De Bruyne, Lukaku and Salah all had amazing games. I remember watching Salah versus Juventus away, and they (Fiorentina) were up against it, but he scored a beautiful goal on the counterattack, going past players and hitting it into the top corner. It was an incredible, incredible goal. I was in the Juventus section and I almost got up and celebrated it!"
Newton also spoke about the ambiguities within Chelsea's loan system at the time, which inevitably played out in the players' favor.
"We spoke about people not understanding the loan programme at the start, but the players didn’t either. After a season or two, they were coming to me and saying they get it now and appreciate it. The agents and parents' feedback started coming and it was positive. These were their careers that we were helping."
He added that he maintained honesty with the players about their chances as not all of them could have gone on to play for Chelsea.
"I know they all wanted to play for Chelsea, but not everyone can. I was just being honest with them and they appreciated that honesty. The club did a lot for these players."
Jose Mourinho's record with Chelsea
Jose Mourinho has managed Chelsea on two occasions. The first was between 2004 and 2008 while the second was between 2013 and 2016. During his combined seven-year association with the club, the Portuguese claimed three Premier League titles, one FA Cup and three League Cups.
He also oversaw the rise of some of the biggest players to represent the Blues, including Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard and John Terry. Mourinho will be forever remembered as one of the greatest managers in the club's history.