Mourinho Hails Arsenal, Wenger

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho yesterday took another sly dig at Arsene Wenger while expressing admiration for a rival he dubbed a “specialist in failure” only a month ago.

Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s visit to Stamford Bridge this weekend which mark Wenger’s 1 000th game in charge, Mourinho said he would like to emulate Wenger’s longevity. “I admire him and I admire Arsenal,” the Portuguese told reporters.

Mourinho being Mourinho, he could not resist a sting in the tail to the praise for a manager whose side have not won a trophy since 2005.

“It is not possible to have 1 000 matches unless the club is also a fantastic club in the way they support their manager, especially in the bad moments and especially when the bad moments were quite a lot,” he said.

“The tribute is to say that I believe any one of us (managers) would love to have the same privilege with our clubs. Could, I stay for 1 000 games? I would like to, but it’s very difficult.

“It’s even more difficult in modern football. If I can reach 500 with Chelsea it would be fantastic.”

Mourinho is in his second spell at Chelsea, returning last June after a first stint that began in 2004 and ended in 2007 following fallout with billionaire Russian owner Roman Abramovich.

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