Paris Saint-Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has given a glimpse into the man-management style of Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho.
The Sweden international worked with the Portuguese during the 2008-09 season at Italian giants Inter Milan. During that campaign, Ibrahimovic was a key player in the Nerazzurri’s Serie A triumph.
It has been over five years since the 33-year-old worked with Mourinho, but the former AC Milan star still holds him in high regard.
‘Mourinho is very intelligent’, Ibrahimovic told The Guardian. ‘He doesn’t treat everybody the same. He knows how to treat people as individuals to get 100% out of them’.
When asked if Mourinho is the most intelligent coach he has ever played for, Ibrahimovic said: ‘Yes. In the way he approaches players and – ‘manipulates’ is the wrong word – gets them very pumped up? No doubt’.
This is not the first time that a former player has praises Mourinho for the way he gets the best out of the players.
Indeed, man-management is a key factor in Mourinho achieving so much success in his managerial career. When the Portuguese was appointed the Inter coach in 2008, the Milan giants were an also-ran in Europe, but in two years they became Champions League winners, beating mighty Barcelona and Bayern Munich on the way.
Inter’s 2009-10 European Cup glory is one of Mourinho’s greatest triumphs, as he got the best out of each and every player. It was the way he brought together an ageing but hungry group of players that was so marvellous.
Mourinho is a polarising figure, but most of the players he has managed have only good words for him.