Mourinho: ‘The most important thing for me right now is happiness’


Roma coach Jose Mourinho says the most important thing for him at this stage of his career is happiness and the stimulation he gets with the Giallorossi. The Special One gave a lengthy interview to Il Corriere dello Sport (via RomaPress) where he explained the reasons for joining Roma two years ago, his motivations, frustrations and hopes for the new season in the capital, and why not having to worry about Paulo Dybala remaining at the club helps him sleeper better:

“I signed for Roma because when I met the Friedkins I really liked their way of speaking. Their words touched me deeply, I needed this. “We think you are the right person to help us make Roma a bigger club,” they told me. They conveyed their enthusiasm, I liked the prospect of a different project, a three-year contract, progressive growth, something I had never considered before,” Mourinho told the newspaper.

“For example, the many young players I helped making them debut with the first team, young players who have grown with me in these two years… When you work for a club like Real Madrid, Manchester United, Chelsea, if you launch one young player during a season you’ve already done your best.”

“At this stage of my career I needed stability, I felt that something in me had changed. In the past I used to constantly want more, I lived in a state of constant restlessness. I was in one place, doing my job, winning and pushing myself, and I immediately wanted to go and win somewhere else.”

“When I signed with Roma, I knew exactly what I was getting into,” he added. “Obviously for me returning to Italy didn’t mean going into the unknown, this is a country that I know well on a cultural, historical and sporting level.”

“I knew that on a social level Roma were an absolutely fantastic club, but also that from the point of view of football history they had won little, despite many good coaches and many first-tier players, and investments too. When you get to know the history of the club, the players that came through here you wonder why so little has been won. Is it possible that you can’t do something different to help the club, the new ownership? If you ask me now if I regret choosing to come here, my answer is no. Absolutely not.”

“Over these last two years I only experienced moments of frustration. The first year I knew the situation, I perceived the desire of the club to grow and I thought: ok, this is perfect for me. A profile like mine, one that has won a lot, usually doesn’t easily accept a potentially minor project. Only Ancelotti at Everton comes to mind,” he added.

“This experience in Rome is stimulating, rich, rich on several levels. Today I have a relationship with my players that is not easy to establish in a top club.”

“You see, the most important thing for me right now is my happiness. The people I work with at Trigoria laugh, joke around, are optimistic and have a sense of humor. That’s all I need.”

“In recent weeks I have seen coaches go insane over their club’s transfer business. I heard of one who threatened to leave because he is not happy with the transfer market, another one who leaves for the same reason. Then there is a third one who jokes with the fans and says we have our hands tied, which would be me. But there’s no provocation in that, that was not the intention.”

“It’s not all good, but I also enjoy the difficult moments here. I get angry for an hour and immediately afterwards I’m back to being positive about things. I don’t get depressed, I don’t threaten people, I don’t say that they promised me heaven and earth and I don’t see the heavens or the mountains. One thing I can’t change is my nature, I’m not one to talk bullshit. With regard to the imaginary striker, I can tell you that even if Mbappé arrives next week he will still be late,” said Mourinho.

“And by the way, stop spreading lies about Belotti. I wanted him in the first place. He stays and he’ll have a great season,” he added.

“After Tammy’s injury we are in a situation that no coach in the world would like to be in. It is impossible for me to say that I am happy. But to say that I’m in open war with the club, with Pinto, that I’m not happy, is very wrong.”

“Pinto knows we’re late, even the owners know it, in the end those who will suffer because of this are those who against Salernitana will have to enter the field with the best possible team. I’m not pissed off and depressed. Twenty years ago I would have screwed up, twenty years ago I would have been pissed off.”

“Pinto? People may have a different perception, but I’ve always had an excellent relationship with the clubs I’ve worked for. I left by my own decision when I felt it was time. Except for Tottenham, where I was sacked two days before playing in a final, which is crazy.”

“Roma fans have understood what the other fans of my previous teams understood,” he added. “Roma fans understood something very, very simple: when I arrive at a club, I wear the colors and I don’t take them off all day, I just need my pajamas, I try to understand the public, their idiosyncrasies, their weaknesses, their strength, what appeals to them, what is important and I become one of them.”

“I’m about to enter my third year here which is very unusual for me. We were able to reach two European finals so far, and through my journey here, I think people have understood that I am one of them.”

“I came to Roma and had to create players who didn’t exist, the “children” I brought to the first team didn’t exist. They have joined a group to which I have tried to pass on the responsibility of winning. Even if we don’t win a lot and if we lose more often, our aim is to teach everyone how to win.”

“The contradiction between our ambitions and our potential intrigues me. I prefer this contradiction, our goal is to win the next game, I refuse to say we have bigger objectives. If they force me to declare concrete objectives, I reply that they are lower than our ambition, that they are lower than what we want to develop as a mentality.”

“Referees? In Italy I feel attacked, they violated my freedom as a man, my freedom as a football player, my freedom not as a great coach, because in these situations there are no big or small coaches, we are all men. I no longer feel comfortable here. I’m afraid of receiving more suspensions, I’m afraid of having to go back to hearing everything I’ve heard or read in these two years.”


Serie A obsessive.