Almost 10 years have had to pass for José Mourinho to sing the ‘mea culpa’ regarding his attack on the ill-fated Tito Vilanova in the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup held at the Camp Nou in August 2011, when he put his finger in the eye in a thong.
The then Madrid coach, who is now undertaking a new challenge at Roma, now acknowledges in a book that it was all his fault and that Pep Guardiola’s then assistant was not at fault (as everyone already knew).
That famous game was heading towards extra time (2-2 in the first leg and in the second leg) until Messi scored 2-3 in the 88th minute. Marcelo then committed a hard foul on Cesc that led to a tangana against the benches. In the midst of the tumult, with the famous Josep Satorra as a spectator ( ‘The Observer’ , he was baptized), Mourinho approached Tito from behind and, out of the blue, stuck a finger in his eye and turned away smiling, to what the surprised technician culé responded with a slap .
The two were sanctioned (two matches against Portuguese, one against Catalan, to be played in the Super Cup) and later amnestied by Ángel María Villar as a measure of grace for his re-election as head of the Spanish Football Federation and Spain’s conquest of the 2012 Eurocup.
” I was the one who failed, I shouldn’t have done what I did. Of course not, the negative image stays forever. Tito had nothing to do with it. I feel sorry for him, ” Mou now acknowledges in ‘Stay crazy and hungry ‘, a book on communication by the journalist João Gabriel.
He is not the biggest regret and he is ten years late, but at least it contrasts with the attitude shown after that game, in which he also belittled the coach at the press conference by calling coach “Pito Vilanova”.
Mourinho was glorified by the fans of the Bernabéu, who for three months kept a huge banner that read ‘Mou, your finger shows us the way’ without Florentino Pérez , the League, or Anti-Violence withdrawing it. “Mourinho is the one who best defends the values of Madridismo. Have no doubt that this is the case,” Florentino said to a partner who spoiled the manager’s attitude in a Madrid assembly.
#Madrid removes the banner from the Bernabéu: “Your finger points the way …” pic.twitter.com/9kRLTIbS
– Denis Garcia (@DeniisG) December 10, 2011
What Mourinho does not seem sorry for is the accusation he launched after that match (in which Barça won “a tiny title” , as he pointed out), that the Barça players pretended: “I have been educated in football to play as a man, so as not to fall at the first blow, “he released then. And in João Gabriel’s book he reaffirms: “Barcelona was good at playing, but better at conditioning the rival and manipulating decisions and perceptions.”
“A bastard for some”
In the book, Mourinho leaves other pearls, as when he assures that honesty has always guided him, in reference to the equal treatment that he claims to have given to all the players: “I always told the players: in me they will find an honest guy. guy who tells you the truth, who tells you the things you want and the things you don’t want to hear.
Someday they may say that I am a bad coach, that I was a bastard, but no one will be able to say that he was not serious and honest . ”
Speaking of a discussion he had with Cristiano Ronaldo , revealed in the biography of Luka Modric, he points out: ” I have problems with egocentric players who put their personal goals before the collective ones. Consecrated or unknown are the same, as long as they work in favor of the team” .
And it also refers to his brief stage as a footballer.
The influence of his father
Mou also recalls his ephemeral stage as a player , analyzing his strengths and his shortcomings: “I knew my limitations, because I was not fast and speed is key in football . What stood out to me from the rest was the ability to read and analyze teams. I could see things that others didn’t , but if I hadn’t been a player my training as a coach would have been poorer. ”
And he assures that being the son of his father, who was an international goalkeeper and coach in several professional teams in Portugal , was key. ” I grew up with access to forbidden spaces. What kid is in a locker room at halftime in a major league game? What child who listens to the talk of the coach? What older child sees his father get fired at the family Christmas lunch? “