— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) May 8, 2015
~~ Ultimate show of respect from #TheSpeacialOne to Steven Gerrard… Some FANTASTIC quotes here ahead of Chelsea vs Liverpool.
“But speaking about Liverpool and speaking about honouring the champions, this is my time to honour a champion. It is my time to honour Steve Gerrard. It is with opponents like him that I am the manager that I am, because I learn with my players and I learn with my best opponents.
“I learn with my players’ problems, my players’ doubts, my players’ qualities and I learn with my best opponent, with the problems they give me – the way they make me think, the way they make me analyse them and studying the best way to play against them.
“Steven Gerrard is for sure one of my favourite enemies – an enemy with all the good feeling I can express with that word in football. For sure, in England he is my dear enemy. For sure, he is the one that made me a better manager. To stop him or try and stop him has been very, very difficult.”
“I tried to bring him to Chelsea, I tried to bring him to Inter, I tried to bring him to Real Madrid but he was always a dear enemy,” he said “I want to honour him and I hope Stamford Bridge has the same feeling as I have, which is we need people like him as our opponents.”
Asked whether not managing Gerrard was one of his biggest regrets, Mourinho immediately responded: “No, no. I am very happy that he didn’t [leave]. In the end I think he had an amazing career and [such] an amazing feeling with his people that he refused to play for other big clubs, he refused to play in other big leagues to play only for Liverpool.
“I think this is a feeling that stays forever. Who knows, [maybe] I will play against Steven as a Liverpool manager one day.”