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Jose Mourinho or Louis van Gaal? Both Barca products and close friends


The Inter Milan head coach Jose Mourinho in the final will face Bayern Munich coached by his former boss. PHOTO by Javier Garcia / isiphotos.com

The Inter Milan head coach Jose Mourinho in the final will face Bayern Munich coached by his former boss. PHOTO by Javier Garcia / isiphotos.com

By Chris Reiko 

Long before Wednesday’s semifinal, public enemy number 1 for Catalan fans is not Christiano Ronaldo, Kaka, or even Real Madrid fans. The most hated man in the Camp Nou is the coach of Inter Milan – José Mourinho! The Portuguese man and his team Inter Milan kicked The Barca out of Champions League final.

The Pride of Catalonia is famous for not only recruiting and developing youth players, but also for developing great soccer coaches. You don’t have to look far for examples. Pep Guardiola is one hundred percent a product of the school in Barcelona, ironically almost the same as Mourinho. Yes, The Special One ran into some great coaching careers in the capital of Catalonia, where he was first a translator and then an assistant to Sir Bobby Robson between 1996 and 2000 when he worked for Barca. 

Nowadays not many even mention that current coaching genius Mourinho started his career as a translator to Robson in 1992 when he coached Sporting Lisbon. The famous Englishman required a local coach with a good command of English to work as his interpreter. It was key move in Mourinho’s life. Later they moved together to FC Barcelona and the rest is known. 

“One of the most important things I learned from Bobby Robson is that when you win, you shouldn’t assume you are the team, and when you lose, you shouldn’t think you are rubbish” said Mourinho. 

Jose Mourinho after victory over Barca. PHOTO ISI by Javier Garcia / isiphotos.com

Jose Mourinho after victory over Barca. PHOTO ISI by Javier Garcia / isiphotos.com

That’s where he received the first facets, which were the basis of his coaching philosophy. At the time Barca authorities somehow did not recognize much coaching talent in José Mário dos Santos Félix Mourinho. Very disappointed, Mourinho decided to continue his carrier with FC Porto, where he won his first and so far only Champions League Trophy. In the city of Porto and the whole of Portugal, his star lit up in all its glory, but the whole of Europe was also impressed by the young, (at the time 41) charismatic Mourinho. 

Master challenge
The Portuguese, who by his diploma is a physical education teacher, never hid his dislike for FC Barcelona. Talking to the press, he criticized and insulted the Catalan club. These sharp verbal skirmishes occurred on the first confrontation in the Champions League in 2005. 

– Barcelona has no chance against Chelsea. I have as a coach won as many Champions League titles as Barcelona in all its history – burned at a press conference before the eighth finals of the Champions League.

Such words did not go unnoticed in the capital of Catalonia. Anger did not hide from him. In years before the famous football coach and former Barcelona boss Johan Cruyff said – Mourinho lacks humility. This club has great history and many successes in your account, which the Portuguese did not even dream of.
Chelsea, than led by The Special One,  eliminated the Catalans from Champions League, which even further upset Barca’s socios. 

After that incident, it is hard to imagine that Mourinho will ever coach FC Barcelona. It will never happen. That may also explain why after the game ,which gave lucky Inter a passport to the final, Mourinho celebrated largely and officially, expressing his euphoria in front of the faces of those frustrated Barca fans. His gestures to them said it all. 

Greeting worthy foe
The former Chelsea manager, like no one else, can heat up the pregame atmosphere without limits – Winning the Champions League is our dream, but for Barcelona, the Champions League is an obsession. This is precisely the difference between us – Mourinho said at a press conference before Wednesday’s game.

Not surprisingly the response from Barca fans was immediate and was not friendly. Blows came after a press conference before the Wednesday revenge match. When the Inter coach came out of the clubhouse, Blaugrana fans attacked his car, which had been coated with cigarette packages that had been thrown, and what is more, aggressively rushed to the vehicle with Mourinho inside. 

How you see Inter Milan chances vs Bayern Munich? Mourinho will do it again? 

In the 2010 final, in the Santiago Barnabeu Stadium in Madrid on May 22, Jose Mourinho with his Inter will face Bayern Munich. Well, he already has great connection there too. 

Bayern Munich is a team coached by Mourinho’s old friend and former boss, also former Barcelona head coach Dutchman Louis van Gaal. Yes they worked together for Barca from 1997-2000. 

I just can’t wait for the 47 year old Mourinho’s pregame press conference and his always provocative sentences about opponents. This time don’t expect a less colorful response from the 58 year old van Gaal. 

Who will win in Madrid ? Inter or Bayern, Jose Mourinho or Louis van Gaal ? welcome your opinions and comments below

Chris Reiko 


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  1. I am just faszinated what Mouriniho did with Internationale Milan. He made out of a good players a really strong team arrount the axe Lucio, Snyder and Milito. It is just great to see this team play the right way.

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