Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho: I care about England’s fortunes

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho says he wants England to do well - and hopes to produce stars for the national team

Harry Kemble
By Harry Kemble
Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho signed a four-year deal with Chelsea in June Photo: The Sport Review

Jose Mourinho says he cares dearly about English football and hopes to continually produce players who merit selection to the national team.

English football has once again come under scrutiny after FA chairman Greg Dyke proposed a commission to try and increase the number of English players in the Premier League.

Mourinho, who was interviewed for the position of England manager in 2007, declared he would “be happy to talk to Dyke” on the issue.

He said: “Yes I do care (about England’s fortunes). I want my players to be selected. I want my players to give everything for the national team. I’ll never say to a player with a small injury, ‘don’t go to the national team, stay here’.”

“When the phone rings and it is somebody connected with the national team, I get the phone with pleasure.”

Mourinho arrived in English football in 2004 and has, perhaps, unfairly earned the impression from some quarters of not caring enough about England, like other foreign managers.

Yet, the 50-year-old said the only time he will not support England is when they play against his native Portugal.

“I want to give my little contribution to improve everything there and try to bring English players to the top. I care a lot,” he added. “The only time I want England to lose is when they play Portugal. All the other matches I want them to succeed.”

Mourinho went on to ponder why English players are sold at such a premium in the Premier League, and used an example of recent situation where he chased an unnamed English youngster.

“I think financially the situation is not always simple. (In the summer transfer window) I liked a young English player but market is closed but I just ask myself to understand a little bit.

“We are speaking about a very young player and the club’s stance is in the market is like 50 international caps when actually he has zero caps. The price for English players is very high.

“The clubs are powerful and they don’t need money. I think it is a consequence of the healthy situation which most of the clubs have. For one point of view, I think it is good.

“If you go to a Portuguese club often the players are leaving behind a difficult situation.”

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