Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho gave Esquire Magazine an exclusive interview which is featured in their most recent issue. The interview was published on Esquire’s website yesterday just ahead of the international friendlies that took place on March 5th. You can read the interview in its entirety here but here are some of our favorite quotes from the story. Some adult language is present in the Esquire piece.
Mourinho does not just create players, he creates what the writer calls “acolytes”:
“But Mourinho’s unconventional methods have also created a small army of players who are acolytes. Zlatan Ibrahimovic claimed the Portuguese manager made him ‘feel like a lion’. Dutch playmaker Wesley Sneijder went even further: ‘I was prepared to kill and die for him.’ When Frank Lampard’s mother died in 2008, Mourinho phoned him every day, commiserating and offering advice. Mourinho wasn’t even his manager then, and there was a strong chance Lampard would never play under him again.”
Mourinho on how most of his players succeed and improve with him:
“It’s impossible to make every player better, with some I don’t succeed and with some I cannot improve. But – if I go player by player – my percentage of players who reach the best years and the best moments of their career with me is huge. Of course, there are a few where the connection was not good, because the personalities couldn’t find each other, or because I don’t enjoy working with them. But that percentage is minimal.”
Mourinho on how he sleeps at night with all the pressure he faces:
“Nothing! I sleep seven, eight hours every night. I cannot compare my job with the doctor who is doing heart surgery. The difference is that I have millions of people know the result of my work and the only people who know the result of his work are the family of the person who is on the operating table. But there is much more responsibility for him than for me. That’s why I sometimes feel that we earn too much money compared to people who do much more than us to benefit humanity.”
Mourinho on what he looks for in players now:
“You have to find the right boy: the boy who wants to succeed, has pride and passion for the game. His dream is not one more million or one less million, his dream is to play at the highest level, to win titles, because if you do these things you’ll be rich the same at the end of your career. So we are working hard to give the best orientation to young players, to follow examples of guys from the past – the Lampards, the Terrys – who were always fanatical for victories.”
If you are a fan of Chelsea, Mourinho, or football in general, do yourself a favor and read the full interview from one of the greatest managers football has ever seen.
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