Real Madrid: Mourinho: What they asked me to do at Real Madrid suited my nature
Real Madrid Discussed importance of Copa del Rey triumph
Jose Mourinho‘s spell in charge of Real Madrid saw him endear himself to some supporters while others did not take to his methods, but the Portuguese coach has revealed that his time at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu has been the best experience of his career so far.
In 2010, the 56-year-old left Inter after winning the treble – Serie A, Coppa Italia and the Champions League – and came to the Spanish capital, where he spent three seasons.
In that time, he won a LaLiga Santander title, a Copa del Rey and a Supercopa de Espana as he looked to end Barcelona‘s stranglehold over Spanish football.
“It’s the best memory of my career, it was fantastic.”
However, the style of play that he enforced, particularly in the Clasicos, was the antithesis of what Pep Guardiola‘s Barcelona were trying to play; Madrid were aggressive, played mind games, looked to strike on the counterattack, and were overly defensive at times, sometimes playing Pepe or Sergio Ramos as holding-midfielders, for instance.
They told me that we had the best team in the world on the other side, that they were crushing us, and we had to reverse the situation.”
Los Blancos‘ Copa del Rey triumph under Mourinho in 2010/11, where they beat Barcelona 1-0 after extra time, was the first step in Madrid believing that they could take down the juggernaut that was Barcelona at that time.
“From there, nothing was the same. We won LaLiga, the Supercopa, but nothing was like that Copa final.
“Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to win any of the three Champions League semi-finals [I took Madrid to].”