Jose Mourinho saw some old and new faces yesterday when he sat in front of the media and he gave them exactly what they wanted as everyone seems to be talking about Wayne Rooney and Chelsea today.
There are stories everywhere about the possibility of Rooney going to Chelsea, which don’t seem to take into account the context of how his comments came about and what they actually told us, if anything.
It’s important to point out Mourinho is a mind game artist and what he says is sometimes now always what he believes will happen.
It’s also important to point out that he made it clear yesterday that he didn’t want to talk about other club’s players and was only drawn into talking about Rooney because of persistent questioning from certain journalists from big British newspapers.
“I think he is at a fantastic age for a player: maturity, big experience, still young,” said Mourinho.
Perfectly logical and right in every sense. If the question had been posed to any other manager in England or Europe, they’d have said exactly the same thing about the Manchester United striker.
“It's up to him and what he wants, what makes him happy,” he added.
Another very logical quote which any manager could have made. Blown out of proportion because it’s Mourinho and he’s just come from Real Madrid where he was quite clearly unhappy.
Through Rooney’s own admission what he wants to make him happy is to play as a central striker and that’s a simple change David Moyes at United can grant him.
“He's a little bit like me: he doesn't need one more pound in his contract. One more cup won't make a different,” he said.
Rooney is that sort of feisty character who embodies everything which is great about an English centre forward.
Mourinho is spot on that money doesn’t matter and that passion and drive is what has made him so popular with United fans, regardless of whether he is still at Old Trafford ahead of next season.
“Where is he happy? Where will he find more happiness to have ambition and drive him? I like him as a boy. I wish him well and hope he is happy.”
That tells us nothing about the possibility of him joining Chelsea. Mourinho was asked a direct question intended to get him saying Chelsea would make a bid and he’s professionally dodged the bullet admirably.
We know nothing we didn’t already know; Rooney wants to leave United, Moyes has a chance of getting him to stay and Chelsea would probably make a bid if United were willing to sell to another English team.
Common sense is needed against the wave of stories blowing the entire issue out of proportion.
What do you make of Mourinho’s comments? Have too much been read into them?
image: © nasmac