Jose Mourinho speaks exclusively to Sky Sports about Chelsea’s immediate future, the hurt from his time at Tottenham and Tammy Abraham.
Roma will face Feyenoord in the Europa Conference League showpiece on May 25 after knocking out Leicester in the semi-final. Roma have not won a European competition for 50 years, since beating Blackpool in the 1972 Anglo-Italian Cup but Mourinho will now look to complete the set after his past Champions League and Europa League victories.
Whilst out in Italy covering the Europa League action, Sky Sports’ Gary Cotterill spent some time with Mourinho and discussed a range a subjects…
Jose talks Chelsea…
“It’s a difficult moment and you can even feel it at the football level because they have lost that level of excellence and stability. But this is at the moment, you know.
“If you ask me do I have someone I would like to take over my Chelsea? Then yes I have, but I close my mouth.
“I just know the club has reached such a level that it doesn’t matter who it’s with, Chelsea will always be Chelsea. Chelsea will always be.
“And my house will always be 200 metres from the stadium and I want to keep listening to the sound of happiness and success and I’m pretty sure it’s going to be like that.”
Jose on his time at Spurs…
“I am in the maturity of my career and also my life where I don’t have bad feelings. I just try to accept the things the way they are.
“Yes. Yes it hurt.
“I react in a funny way when I speak with some English journalists at press conferences. I always say the joke about qualifying for the [Conference League] Final, I hope not to be sacked this time, because it’s something that doesn’t happen to too many coaches.
“This time I cannot say I’m the privileged one, because it happened to me.
“I don’t have regrets. I don’t have bad feelings. There are lots of nice people in Tottenham and I wish them the best. Even to Mr Levy.
“But for a guy with my career and my history I think it was a strange thing to happen.
“But in the end it opened the door for me to be in Rome and I’m very happy to be in Rome.
“Of course I would love to be in a position of fighting to win titles or to be in the Champions League where I played 160 or 170 games there.
“But I am loved here. I love the people here. I feel very much a part of the empathy created between the fans and the club and myself and the players. I’m very happy here.”
Jose on ‘amazing’ Tammy Abraham…
“Against Leicester he was absolutely amazing and at this moment I joke and say ‘I refuse to praise him’ because he can always do better.
“He knows how happy I am. He knows how much I love the kid and the player and I’m proud of what we are doing and I’m so happy for Tammy.
“We have got into this situation where I demand a lot from him because I know he can do amazingly well.
“I don’t think it’s an easy decision for a young player to leave his club, his house, his city, his country and to leave the Premier League which is of course a competition that when a player is in its hard to leave.
“He took that option and I think he took it because he trusted me. And I think in this moment, if he wants to go back to England – I don’t think he wants to no – but if he wants to go back to England he just needs to click his fingers and I’m so happy for him.
“He’s back in the national team and is loved in Rome. I don’t say proven everybody wrong, because I think everyone knows he’s a good player and I think also, with Smalling, Tomori and Tammy, showing the English boys that there is life outside the Premier League and in Italy there’s a life that makes them even better players.”