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Senior Poster of the year 2007
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Interview in El Mundo Deportivo

Barça has represented a long stage in your career as coach. Which is the importance of it in your transformation?

It has a lot of importance. My stage in Barcelona was one of the most important things in my life in all the aspects. Personally, my daughter Matilde arrived when she just was borned, and my son José was born there. In sport, Barcelona prepared me to give the big step in my career as coach. I learned a lot from Robson and Van Gaal.

What memories do you have from that stage?

There were good and bad things, but I recall the good ones. When I arrived there, I had been 2 years with Robson in Porto and we had won everything, but it had been very easy. That Porto was very superior compared with the rest of the teams of the Portuguese league. In Barça I knew the 2 sides of football, the positive one, wining titles with Robson first and Van Gaal later, and the negative one, the crisis.

Was Van Gaal an ogre?

The truth is that he taught me a lot of things. He had his own character, difficult sometimes, but he was honest. It was difficult at the begining, very positive later and difficult again at the end, with all the critics, the titles lost in the last year, the social division, the resignings of President Nuñez and Van Gaal, the arrival of Serra Ferrer and the new era... now the club has overcame that bad time.

Being Barça's coach, is it a difficult task?

In my stage there, if we didn't win a title, there was a war. There was a huge exigence, perhaps exagerated, and it meant a great level of pressure. It was a live or die matter. But preciselly, this experience was good for me. During 3 years, I learned a lot working with world class coaches, a squad full of stars, knowing that being second is a failure and with an enviroment and a press that check every minimum detail. Barça prepared me to stand the pressure, because that's what they are: maximum pressure.

In England, there is no pressure?

Of course, there is... but they leave you work with more calm. For example, I signed a 4 year contract with Chelsea. In England, it is almost impossible to fire a coach after one season, unless he gets catastrophic results. Another difference: the media doesn't make a daily review of the training sesions. There is a day for a press conference and then we see each other in the match day.

From the distance, do you think that this situation has changed in Barcelona?

The club has learned to be united and to have patience. The last title was won in 1999 and now, after 5 years without a title, I think that there is a stage of victories for Barça. In all this time, the barcelonistas have learned that to be anxious is not the best way to achieve titles. You need calm and, especially, time.

When you were in Barcelona, the current president was the boss of the active oposition to Nuñez. Do you think that he's doing a good job?

In my modest opinion, I think that they're doing quite well, Laporta and the rest of the directors. From out of the club, and that means that I have few elements to make a good review, I think that the new board has known how to give more union and calm to the club and they've given Rijkaard the margin of confidence that every coach needs to make his job. In the first year of a coach, you need to be patient, if you don't win, and Rijkaard has had this opportunity.

What opinion do you have about the current Barça?

Good. They practice a nice football and, at the same time, competitive. Signing well was the key and that's not easy, especially if you don't have much money. Barça has reinforced the team very well. I know that they have some economical limitations and when you have few money, you can not make mistakes. They've done a great job, especially with Eto'o and Deco, because we're talking about this season. They're 2 players that show that the Board knew what they were signing.

Are you surprised of the 10 point gap over the second in Xmas?

I'm not surprised for the good results of the team, but I'm surpirsed of how easy it is being. For example, Valencia had won La Liga and the UEFA Cup last season and they seemed a serious rival for La Liga, but they're very irregular this season. Real Madrid doesn't play like a team and they're in clear decadence, and Depor, it's impossible to explain it... well, Barça has no rival in La Liga right now.

In the CL it's not the same and it depends on your team, Chelsea...

The truth is that I don't know how the matches are going to be. There are 2 months left until they're played and I don't know how we'll arrive to these matches. What I can say today is that the leg is going to be ballanced. It won't be decided until the last moment of the 2nd match, so we'll have to fight until the last second.

And Rijkaard?

He's doing a great job. Few people expected it. The only thing that I can say is that I respect his work. As I've said, it was a good decision to give him a margin in his first year. Now you see the results.

About Barça, which is the thing that you fear the most? Maybe, is your ex-player Deco?

Everything, the team. Barça is a team with players with a lot of talent like Ronaldinho, Eto'o and, of course, Deco, who can decide a match by themselves, but it's the whole team which has made them leaders in Spain. In any case, to annalyze Barça, from our point of view, we'll have to wait until February.

3 years ago, when you were in Porto, Barça already asked for Deco. You told your president, Pinto da Costa, that he could sell anyone, except Deco. Would you like to have him in Chelsea?

Sure, but in our squad, we have good players too. I think that Deco has signed for the right club in the right moment. Last year, when Barcelona was interested in him, I told him to wait one more year, because Barcelona was going to enter in a good stage and he could wait. The first year of the project is always the most difficult.

Do you miss him?

Of course, I miss Deco,... and also Maniche, McCarthy,... I miss everyone who made Porto European Champion last season. I'd like to have Deco with me, but also any of them, our main strangth was the team.

In Spanish
http://www.elmundodeportivo.es/20041230/NOTICIA188734729.html
 

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"It would be impossible to have another year the same," Mourinho said somewhere else about last year success with (Porto)."That's right Mourinho" and it only begins with (Barcelona)be prepared you are going down down down.
 

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Well i'll say what i see with my own eyes only... The teams that he (Mourinho) coached lately have been succesful.. yes.. but they've been ugly and i mean ugly to watch. just look at his chelsea i watched them play like 2 days ago against Birmingham i think it was and just about minute minute 65 they were down in possession 25% to 75% !!! imagine having a team like Birmingham boss you around 75-25 !!

when chelsea come to the Nou Camp in February i have to tell our dear football loving fans not to expect a game of football at all... just watch for a chelsea of packed defense and a bunch of shirt grabbers spitting and swearing at every player and ball. For the sake of football i hope we give them a lesson to learn because technically we are in another class of football relative to them.... but i too know that attractive football is not always the winner.
 

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Moe said:
Well i'll say what i see with my own eyes only... The teams that he (Mourinho) coached lately have been succesful.. yes.. but they've been ugly and i mean ugly to watch. just look at his chelsea i watched them play like 2 days ago against Birmingham i think it was and just about minute minute 65 they were down in possession 25% to 75% !!! imagine having a team like Birmingham boss you around 75-25 !!

when chelsea come to the Nou Camp in February i have to tell our dear football loving fans not to expect a game of football at all... just watch for a chelsea of packed defense and a bunch of shirt grabbers spitting and swearing at every player and ball. For the sake of football i hope we give them a lesson to learn because technically we are in another class of football relative to them.... but i too know that attractive football is not always the winner.
Its true that Chelsea have had their share of ugly games and Porto last season, but who hasn't? During the UCL, I only saw 3 games in which Porto won that were "ugly". Against Man Utd, they play excellent in both legs. They were playing great football, every pass was precise. In the Super Liga, over a 3 year period, all I saw was beautiful football even though there would be a game here and there once in awhile. I disliked the way Chelsea played in the begining of the season. Then again, they were adapting to Mourinho's system and new players, so they would win games 1-0 somewhat struggling. However, now they have been excellent. They have been playing great, dominating possession and scoring. They still will have games like you described against Birmingham.
 

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The donkey was hard to do, and I was a bit tired, so everyone is invited to do a better job than I did. The ogre wasn't that difficult. Especially because it didn't need much alteration. The nose was perfect already :D
 

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Soccer Star said:
This guy is one of a kind
Out of curiosity, who will you support come the match? Or is it just that you are proud of the Portuguese (well Deco somewhat as well I guess :happy: ) that all those teams have?
 

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FC Barca11 said:
Out of curiosity, who will you support come the match? Or is it just that you are proud of the Portuguese (well Deco somewhat as well I guess :happy: ) that all those teams have?
I actually supported both clubs before they got some Portuguese into them. Put it like this, either way I'm not going be happy with the result. So I'm pretty much screwed.
 
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