It’s been a rough week for Arsene Wenger. Though he did get a big midweek win against Spurs in the Capital One Cup, it only came after he lost to Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea yet again last weekend, which was quickly followed by reports of he and his wife getting divorced. So Mourinho has decided to round it out by giving Wenger a familiar kick for not being down enough.
From the Guardian:
The conversation then moved on to Steve McClaren, a manager under pressure at Newcastle United whom Chelsea face on Saturday. “In this country, only one manager is not under pressure,” Mourinho said. “Every other manager is. I am under pressure, Steve is under pressure, [Manuel] Pellegrini is under pressure, Brendan [Rodgers] too. We cannot be below par. We have to meet the objectives. I have sympathy with all of them, because it’s a difficult job. There’s one outside that list, but good for him. I have sympathy for Steve.”
Asked to be specific about which manager was outside the list, he said: “You know. The one who can speak about the referees before the game, after the game, can push people in the technical area [a reference to the pair’s clash in the technical area at Stamford Bridge in October 2014], can moan, can cry in the morning, in the afternoon, and nothing happens. He cannot achieve [success] and keep his job, still be the king. I say just one.”
Pointing out Wenger’s long leash is something Mourinho has done many times before, even going so far as to describe him as a “specialist in failure” last season, so the Arsenal manager should be used to this by now. If anything, he should probably be flattered by this diatribe since Mourinho is basically expressing his jealousy that Wenger can get away with everything he wishes he could.
It wouldn’t be a complete Jose Mourinho press conference without a conspiracy theory, though. On the topic of Diego Costa’s violent conduct ban and the possibility of increased scrutiny on him from referees, Mourinho said:
“In the rule book it says some managers can speak about the referees before and after games. Some others cannot. Then comes the list. I am in the list of those who are punished if they speak about the referees before the game. I have to stick to that rule book because I am in the list of those who cannot speak about the referees.”
Asked to clarify, he added: “You know that some can [talk about referees]. It’s an imaginary list, but clearly [I am on it].”