St Helens StarMancini: Touchline battle irrelevant (From St Helens Star)

Send us news by text, start your message Star News and your send photos and videos to 80360

National Sport

Mancini: Touchline battle irrelevant

St Helens Star: Roberto Mancini, pictured, says what the players do is more important than any perceived rivalry between him and Jose Mourinho Roberto Mancini, pictured, says what the players do is more important than any perceived rivalry between him and Jose Mourinho

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has played down talk of a personal duel with Real Madrid counterpart Jose Mourinho ahead of Wednesday's vital Champions League clash.

Any tension is believed to relate to the manner in which Mourinho succeeded Mancini at Inter Milan in 2008, and then followed by taking the Italian's title-winning squad on to Champions League glory. But Mancini has no time for any such suggestions and is focused only on victory at the Etihad Stadium, rather than specifically spoiling Mourinho's 100th match in the competition.

"Congratulations to him. To do 100 caps in the Champions League at his age (49) is very important, but I think tomorrow is not Mourinho against Mancini but City against Real Madrid," Mancini said.

Mancini's son Andrea, who plays for Spanish side Real Valladolid, this week added spice to the clash by saying his father knew more about football than Mourinho. He qualified that by saying Mourinho was a better motivator and added that the ideal manager would be "a mixture of the two".

Roberto Mancini said: "My son has his opinion, I respect his opinion. Mourinho is a good manager but it is an opinion. If you talk with Mourinho's sons, they say the same."

After collecting just two points from their first four matches in Group D, City must beat the Spanish giants to keep their slim hopes of reaching the knockout stages alive. Even then they will have to follow up by beating Borussia Dortmund in a fortnight and hope other results go their way to avoid premature elimination for a second successive season.

As far as Mourinho is concerned, the task is already beyond the Premier League champions and feels City, with all their quality, must be hurting.

The Portuguese, twice a winner of the competition, said: "I speak for myself. If Real Madrid loses a final or semi-final, or even a quarter-final, that is football.

"When you are out at the group phase it is more difficult to accept and understand. Last season they are out, and I think this season they will be out again.

"I think they can win tonight, of course they can, and they can also win in Dortmund, why not, but eight points is not enough."

More national sport stories

Comments

Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

click2find

Get Adobe Flash player
About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree