West Ham United boss Sam Allardyce has said that Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho in the best in the world ahead of their Boxing Day showdown.
The Hammers travel to Stamford Bridge with manager Allardyce surely a shoe-in for Manager of the Year after a fabulous first-half of the season.
West Ham lie in fourth spot in the Premier League table, a far cry from their position this time last season - when they were in the midst of a relegation battle with just 14 points from 17 matches.
The former Bolton Wanderers boss, however, played down his own success, pointing out Mourinho's quality.
The self-proclaimed Special One has transformed Chelsea from under-performers to a team widely regarded as title favourites, and one capable of achieving a unique quadruple in just 15 months.
Aside from the results, Chelsea are achieving their success with a certain panache, prompting Allardyce to label his upcoming rival as the best in the business.
'I think out of all the club managers working at the moment Jose is the best in the world. If you look at his track record I don’t think there is any doubt about that', he is quoted as saying by The Sun.
'There is only Carlo Ancelotti who perhaps matches him. But certainly what Jose has achieved across many different countries is outstanding. That is why I was delighted when he came back to England'.
Mourinho has won league titles - in Spain, Italy, England and Portugal, and is now looking to become the only manager in history to have won the Champions League with three different clubs.