Mourinho's special love for Africans

Mourinho's special love for Africans

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Everyone is discussing Mourinho's future. Immediately after his resignation from Roma, it was reported that he turned down a club from Saudi Arabia. Later, insiders mentioned Bayern Munich, Napoli and Barça. And the Daily Mail wrote about a return to the APL: they say José has unfinished business at MU.

The Portuguese has not yet responded. But in February he gave a lively interview to Rio Ferdinand, where he reminisced about his work at previous clubs. And paid a lot of attention to Africans:

“I can't go to Africa! It's too much for me. I've worked with many African footballers: Drogba, Obi Mikel, Kalou, Essien and others… Every time I'm in Africa, they don't give me a pass. They keep very much from me!

There have been many African footballers in Mourinho's career. Below are powerful stories of their relationships.

Mourinho found Drogba back at Porto and brought him back to Chelsea in 2014

The Portuguese learned about the talented Drogba back in 2003 when he left Marseille:

“In 2003 I coached Porto, and we met Marseille in the Champions League. That night, Drogba scored and celebrated as if it was his last goal. The atmosphere at the Velodrome was crazy, the noise was deafening.

I came to him in the tunnel at half-time and said: “I don't have the money to buy you. Maybe you have brothers in Ivory Coast who play like you?

He laughed, hugged me and said: “One day you will be at a club that can buy me.” Six months later I signed a contract with Chelsea. I had a few options to sign, but I came and said: “I want Didier Drogba”.

Drogba joined Chelsea at the age of 26. In his first season, he missed two months due to injury and scored 16 goals in 41 games. Fans do not like the Ivorian for simulations. Drogba himself then told the press that he wanted to leave, but Mourinho helped.

“Jose always supported me, especially at the beginning of my career at Chelsea, when I was criticized mercilessly,” Drogba wrote in his autobiography. – Even when he was criticized for taking over me, then an unknown player, he answered clearly: “Judge him when he leaves the club”. That belief in success is what Mourinho is all about.

Essien played for José at Real Madrid and Chelsea

It all started at Chelsea: in 2005, Jose agreed to the transfer of Essien from Lyon for 38 million euros. Michael was happy with his first meeting with Mourinho: the coach knew everything about his style of play. After moving to London, Essien began to play regularly in the base, and in the press he was called “Mourinho's soldier”.

“Essien is not my player. Don't say that. He is my son, and I am his white father. We are very close, our bond is much stronger than just a job. I understand why players like him are ready to die on the field. But what he did for me at Real Madrid cannot be said. Michael was ready to play for me with an injured knee,” Jose recalled in 2018. However, Mourinho later asked Essien to stop calling him “daddy” to mention – explaining that they are almost the same age (although the Portuguese is 20 years older).

In 2010 Mourinho went to Real Madrid. Essien, at that time, missed about a year due to injuries (there was even a broken cruciate) and lost his place in the Chelsea team. In the summer of 2012, on the last day of the transfer window, he received a call from Mourinho himself and called him. At that time he traveled with the club to the final of the European Super Cup. Essien called the driver to stop, jumped off the bus and went to the hotel in time to send all the documents.

It didn't work out for Essien at Real Madrid. But a year later, when Essien's loan ended, they were already back at Chelsea: “When I scored the last goal for Real Madrid in the last game of the season, I ran to Mourinho to talk to him celebrate. I expected him to congratulate me when I hugged him. Instead, he leaned over and said, “See you on July 8 for the preseason.” I laughed.”

Both were already at Chelsea in the summer of 2013. Michael played a few games in London and six months later went to AC Milan.

Essien and the Portuguese are friends. During his holidays, he even took Mourinho to his hometown in Accra (the capital of Ghana), where they would spend hours playing football.

Africans were ready to die for him and would agree to a transfer after one call

Two years ago, Eto'o explained why he thinks so highly of the Portuguese: “Mourinho is the best coach in the world because he thinks African players are the best. He believes so much in Africa and African players that he gives her a chance at any time.

– John Obi Mikel has recently appeared in the media – launching his own podcast. And in December, Mourinho, who does not often give interviews, came in to see him. And explained why he did not refuse John: “Because Jan is my boy. If one of my boys had called me on the podcast, I would have said yes. Jan was the first.

In 2011, Mourinho loaned Adebayor to Man City for just six months. But even at that time, the African spent time with the Portuguese: “Mourinho is different, not like everyone else. He has an absolutely unique vision of football: defense, attack development, mentality.

Striker Felix Afena-Gyan of Roma debuted in big football just under Jose Mourinho: he came on for half an hour against Cagliari. He helped them bounce back and win 0:1. And in the match against Genoa, he finally scored the winner – and ran to celebrate with José. After the match, the coach explained the matter: “I promised to buy Felix trainers, which he would like if he scored. They are expensive, costing 800 euros. After the goal he ran up to me and told me not to forget it! Of course José kept his promise.

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