English Premiership

Mou: no Moyes mind-games

2013-07-23 16:51
Jose Mourinho (AFP)

Jakarta - Chelsea's Jose Mourinho Tuesday hit back at suggestions he was trying to destabilise new Manchester United manager David Moyes after targeting striker Wayne Rooney.

The experienced Portuguese campaigner said he had done nothing but praise the English champions' incoming boss since returning for a second spell at Stamford Bridge.

Mourinho said he had called Moyes a "great coach, (who) deserves success, he deserves time to work, he didn't win trophies in Everton because it's very difficult to win trophies there".

"If to speak good about him is to play mind games, what do you say if I speak bad about him?" Mourinho told a briefing in the Indonesian capital Jakarta.

"So the best thing is not to speak.

"If I don't speak, nobody says anything."

Mourinho raised suspicions that he was trying to make life difficult for Moyes after speaking glowingly about Rooney and hinting a move could improve his England chances before Chelsea's bid was made public.

Moyes, taking over from the legendary Alex Ferguson, has had trouble with the Rooney question in his early weeks in charge, and has repeatedly told journalists the unsettled striker is not for sale.

However, he flatly told Mourinho to "bring it on" when asked if he was a victim of mind games by the ex-Inter Milan and Real Madrid manager.

"If you're from Glasgow you quite enjoy those kind of things, so bring it on," said the Scot.

However Mourinho, whose team plays an Indonesian All-Stars outfit on Thursday, added that Chelsea had an advantage over other teams because none of their players was up for grabs.

"Many clubs are waiting till the last moment to make that decision (to buy or sell players) but the problem is this decision affects not just one or two clubs but a lot of them," he said.

"In that aspect we are lucky because we don't have players to sell so none of my players is leaving in any circumstances.

"So that's good for me... because many teams will be to the last moment under pressure."

England defender Ashley Cole, signed during Mourinho's first stint at Chelsea after an infamous "tapping-up" scandal, said he wanted to stay at the club "as long as I can".

"I wouldn't say I've had an unfulfilled Chelsea career.

"I've been lucky enough to win a few trophies.

"I hope to win more.

"Having the manager back, we can do it all together," said the 32-year-old.

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