Jose Mourinho has again reflected that he will one day return to English football, commenting that he is ‘in love with it’, praising its passion.
The tactician has been under scrutiny this season for his downturn in fortune at Real Madrid and has been rumoured as being on his way out of the Spanish capital at the end of the season.
In sending a congratulatory video message to the English Football Association, as they mark 150 years of existence this week, Mourinho again chose to comment on his long-standing desire to return to the English Premier League
“To say congratulations to the English FA is to say congratulations to football. It’s to say congratulations to everybody that loves football around the world,” commented the Portuguese in his message.
“For me, the English FA means not just the passion of football in England, but also the passion of football around the world.
“I think they are most responsible for why football is what it is around the world. So I feel also that I should congratulate myself about your 150 years, because as everybody knows I am completely in love with the game and a person in love with the game must be in love with the English FA.”
Mourinho spent just over three seasons in England as manager of Chelsea, winning two Premier League medals along the way, before departing in September 2007.
“My memories from English football could not be better. It was my first experience outside of Portugal – I was still a very young coach when I left Portugal to go to England.
“But there couldn’t be a better place to go. In England you feel the real passion for the game. You also don’t feel what we feel in almost every other country, which is the passion for clubs. In England, it’s not just about passion for clubs, it’s mainly about passion for football – and you feel it.
“My memories are great. I loved it from the first to the last day. I don’t regret my last day because after that I was lucky enough to enjoy Italy and to have and enjoy some success there [with Inter] and also in Spain, so I don’t regret the day I left. But I know that one day I will come back because English football means a lot to myself.
“For me, the FA Cup represents the passion of football. It represents clean football. It represents the good smell of football. If you are in England and you play in England, you feel it.
“You feel everything. You feel the passion. You feel that it’s clean, you feel proud to be in football – even in the worst moments. That’s pure football. That’s the football you play as a kid in the street transported through time and space into organised competition and into the real world of football.
“Of course, it’s impossible, but I feel everybody involved in the game should experience English football because it’s a special feeling. You really enjoy being a football professional there.”