In response to questioning over the Blues’ spending in the January transfer window, the Portuguese coach hit back at title rivals Manchester City with regards to their outlay on players signed over the summer.
Pellegrini criticised Chelsea for their spending over the course of the last ten years when he met with the press last week.
“The team that spends the most money in the last 10 years, the team that spends the most money this year, so a little bit rich," he said of Chelsea.
“I think he's a fantastic coach, and I respect that a lot, and on top of that, outside his football career, he's an engineer by qualification,” Mourinho said of his rival and colleague.
“ I don't think an engineer needs a calculator to do Mata £37m and De Bruyne £18m, so that's £55m. Matic is £21m and Salah is £11m. That's £32m, and 55 minus 32 is 23.”
“So Chelsea, in this transfer window, generated £23m. It's easy to understand that this is working with financial fair play, 'fair' financial fair play. There are no arguments against that. This is what we're doing. Others aren't doing the same,” he added.
Mourinho has brought in young players at Stamford Bridge this winter window and indeed looks to be building a team that can challenge and perhaps even dominate the Premier League and Champions League for the next decade and the Blues have appeared to be taking notice of the Financial Fair Play regulations due to come into effect this summer.
“We are building a team for the next decade, if possible. [City] have a team to win now because they don't have a team for 10 years. They have a team for now, for the next three or four. So experience, potential, power, not worried about financial fair player because, in the summer, they just spend ... We don't need a calculator for this. It's easy: +23,” he explained.
Whilst Mourinho may have a point in relation to the last 12 months at Chelsea, it is easy to understand where Manuel Pellegrini is coming from – Chelsea have spent around £814 million since 2004 when owner Roman Abramovich took charge of the club. Manchester City have spent around £708.3 million in that same period.
If we’re just restricting the spending comparisons to the last 12 months, Chelsea have spent £109.6 million and City have spent £103.2 million. However, as Mourinho rightly says, Chelsea have attempted at least to offset that outlay with player sales. Chelsea have recouped £56.6 million making their balance for that period £53 million to Manchester City’s £89.8 million as the Citizens recouped just £13.4 million in that same period.
One thing all the other 18 teams in the Premier League would probably agree on is that these two clubs are the biggest spenders and worst offenders when it comes to financial fair play.
What remains to be seen is how the imminent introduction of these rules will impact their ability to dominate over the next ten years but, at present, you would have to say Mourinho seems to have the upper hand with his young squad and players out on loan.