Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Motormouth Warnock Recognises a Kindred Spirit in Mourinho

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Motormouth Warnock Recognises a Kindred Spirit in Mourinho

Article excerpt


JOSE MOURINHO may have his detractors but Neil Warnock is a fully paid-up member of the Chelsea head coach's fan club.

In fact, the Sheffield United manager believes that English football is lucky to have the Portuguese on board.

Although the pair fall easily into the game's old and new schools of management, in some respects they are kindred spirits.

"We are both good-looking," laughs Warnock when asked to draw parallels.

But he is content enough to share with the Portuguese a reputation for straight talking.

As communication between players and fans becomes increasingly sterile, Mourinho and Warnock can both add a splash of colour and anarchy to proceedings.

Warnock said: "We both don't mind a row, but I think it is more we just stick up for what we believe in.

When you wholeheartedly believe in something there is no limit to how far you go. About 99 per cent of things he says I agree with, so it must be just the way we are.

"I agreed with everything he said about Reading and Petr Cech's injury. I am completely behind him on that. Everybody was saying the tackle was accidental but I disagreed. I thought Reading's Stephen Hunt could have avoided it and Jose was right.

"I think he just says what he wants. That is how he is. In the circumstances, that is a good as it is going to get.

"He gets slated because he is big news but the place would be boring without him. He is a great asset to the Premier League."

While the rows over Cech's fractured skull have raged on, Warnock's latest outburst involved him suggesting referee Dermot Gallagher should have retired and offering a signed Sheffield United shirt to speed him on his way.

The official in charge of tomorrow's clash between the sides at Bramall Lane is Martin Atkinson, who is "not arrogant or looking for the limelight," according to Warnock.

Far from the referee causing him concern this weekend, it is the behaviour of a pair of his own players who have caused the Sheffield United boss a headache. …

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