Wesley Sneijder and Mourinho to Meet Again


This piece comes to you from The Pride of London contributor Muneeb Khan, follow him on Twitter @MUK734

For the upcoming Champions League Round of 16 tie between Chelsea and Galatasaray, the return of Didier Drogba to Stamford Bridge has been the main storyline. At the same time, there is another reunion taking place between Wesley Sneijder and his old Inter Milan manager, Jose Mourinho. In the summer of 2009, Mourinho bought Sneijder from Real Madrid for €15 million and the two had immediate success in their only season together.

With Sneijder directing the midfield, Inter Milan captured a historic treble, the first for an Italian club, by winning the Champions League, Serie A, and Copa Italia. It was the club’s first Champions League title in 45 years. After the win, Mourinho resigned and became manager of Real Madrid. On the other hand, Sneijder played for an additional two and a half years at Inter Milan before transferring to Galastaray over a contract dispute.

While this is not the first time he (or in that case Drogba) are facing their old manager [both of them faced Mourinho’s Real Madrid in last year’s UCL quarterfinals], it is his first game against English opponents in over 3 years. This is significant because for the last 3 years, Sneijder has always been rumored to be involved in a transfer to a Premier League club.

In the early days of summer 2011, it was reported that Chelsea officials met with Inter Milan to discuss a transfer but it did not go anywhere. In a last-minute movie, Manchester United made a bid but Inter was able to counter it because was too small. The transfer mill heated up again in 2013 with Dutch national team coach Louis Van Gaal suggesting that Sneijder should move to the London club, but Mourinho and Sneijder denied this would take place. This has not stopped the newspapers from gossiping that Sneijder might play in the Premier League once his contract with Galastaray expires in 2016.

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