Thursday, May 28, 2015Thursday, May 28, 2015

Football: Mourinho hits back over Iniesta criticism

Published on Jun 11, 2013 6:23 AM
Chelsea's new manager Jose Mourinho speaks to the media during a press conference at Chelsea's Stamford Bridge stadium in London, Monday June 10, 2013. -- PHOTO: AP

LONDON (AFP) - Newly reinstalled Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho on Monday hit back at Andres Iniesta after the Barcelona midfielder claimed he "damaged Spanish football" during his time as Real Madrid coach.

Mourinho was a controversial figure during his three-year tenure at Madrid, regularly launching barbs at Barcelona and notoriously jabbing then assistant coach Tito Vilanova in the eye during a 2011 encounter between the sides.

His behaviour threatened to overshadow his achievements, which included a Spanish Cup success over Barca in 2011 and a record-breaking triumph in the 2011-12 Liga campaign.

It also prompted Iniesta to claim that Mourinho would not be missed after he agreed to return to Chelsea, but the Portuguese coach said the Spanish midfielder's remarks represented sour grapes.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!