Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has revealed that he doesn’t consider Arsene Wenger as his rival. Ahead of probably the biggest London Derby in recent years, Mourinho was very calm and avoided talk of his relationship with the Frenchman.
Mourinho has been very critical of Wenger in the past as he has called him a ‘voyeur’ and ‘specialist in failure’. However, when he was asked about Arsene Wenger, he tried not to speak too much about him and said, “The only thing that matters is the football game. For me, he is not my rival.
“He is the manager of a big club in the same city where I work. It is a big club with the same objectives we have.”
“It[his relation with Wenger] is no different from when I was at Inter with the Milan manager, at Real with the Atletico manager, or Porto with Benfica. It was the same.”
Sunday’s game could be Wenger’s best chance to finally get one over his nemesis, Mourinho, as the Portuguese is still unbeaten against Arsenal. In addition to that, Chelsea are unbeaten against Arsenal in the last seven games and have won five of those. The Gunners’s last victory came nearly four years ago in 2011 when they beat the blues 5-3 at Stamford Bridge.
A win for Arsenal will be Wenger’s first over Mourinho and it will take them to within seven points of Chelsea. With five games to play after that, the Red half of London could still have a chance of winning the League if results go their way.
Arsenal, however, will be without their German defender Per Mertesacker who suffered an ankle injury and was subsequently ruled out. Chelsea will be without Diego Costa and Didier Drogba for the game and could even be without Loic Remy which will mean that they’ll play without a natural striker. Wenger could field defender Gabriel in Mertesacker’s absence.
Although the press conference was pretty low key, we do expect Wenger and Mourinho to have a few words on the touchline as it’ll be likely that the Gunners boss will get frustrated by Chelsea’s set up which in all honesty, could be very defensive come Sunday. The duo were involved in a scuffle in the reverse fixture where Wenger pushed Mourinho on the sidelines after a Gary Cahill challenge.