Continue reading "Jose Mourinho responds to Mikel Arteta’s praise and reveals his nickname for the Arsenal boss"
Metro Sport ReporterFriday 10 Jul 2020 5:35 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link156Shares The Spurs manager takes on Arsenal in the north London derby on Sunday (Picture: Spurs TV)Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho has responded in kind to Mikel Arteta’s glowing praise ahead of the north London derby and revealed he has known the Arsenal coach since he was a schoolboy at Barcelona.The two managers go head-to-head as rivals on Sunday but their relationship dates back decades to when Mourinho was a coach at Barca under Louis van Gaal and Arteta was playing in the club’s famed La Masia academy.Mourinho says he will always have a fondness for Arteta as a result – and has only recently started calling him “Mister” after his move into coaching. Arteta had plenty of praise for Mourinho before they face off on Sunday (Picture: Getty)The respect is clearly mutual, with Arteta having described Mourinho as ‘world-class’ and backing him to win titles again, and the Spurs boss was grateful for those comments, saying his counterpart has a difficult job to turn Arsenal around in the short-term while also building for the future.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTAsked about Arteta’s comments, Mourinho said at his pre-match press conference: ‘Look I met Mikel when Mikel was a kid in Barcelona. I was there with Mr Van Gaal, Mikel was a kid. Really, really a kid.‘So I know him from there and when you know these kids at this age, time flies but in the end you always look at them as the kid that you have a great feeling for. When he became Pep’s assistant, in a funny way I started calling him, every time we met, “Mister”, not Mikel anymore. “Mister”. So we had always a laugh on this.More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal‘And of course I like him very, very much. I hope everything goes well for him in his career, but I have to admit in this moment he is at a rival club, a club that fights in this moment for the same things we fight – which is a European position. And I cannot wish him good in this situation.‘The nature of his job is quite similar to mine, is quite similar to Carlo [Ancelotti], which is that you arrive in the middle of the season and then it’s a double focus, which is not easy, which is by one side you want to try and get the best results immediately, but by another side you have an eye on the future. Jose Mourinho responds to Mikel Arteta’s praise and reveals his nickname for the Arsenal boss Advertisement Mourinho’s Spurs have been far from impressive since the restart (Picture: Getty)‘What you want is to build your own team. What you want is to start the new season. So for me, for Carlo, for Mikel, it’s this kind of job. When you are in a relegation fight, I would say for example Neil Warnock going there, he knows that he needs a certain number of points to keep his club in the division. He knows exactly what he has to do to do that.‘In our cases I think it’s different, because we are speaking about very important clubs, clubs that want to do better in the future, and this is half now, and half in the future.‘So I think we all are desperate to have end of season, holiday, preparation, pre-season and then the new season. But the reality is that we have to fight for points and in this case points mean a Europa competition position and points means also a special rival feeling between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.’AdvertisementAdvertisementMORE: Jose Mourinho says Michael Oliver was Bournemouth’s Man of the Match vs Tottenham and slams penalty non-callMORE: Jose Mourinho flounces out of press conference as Roy Keane fires dig at SpursFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Advertisement Comment