What We're Reading

Mourinho Tells Us Why He's So Special

He is the self-described, self-styled "special one," the man who arrived at Stamford Bridge in 2004 fresh from having sewn up both the Portuguese league and far more prestigious European Champions League to take control of an English club that had suddenly found itself with an endless supply of funds to spend on the world's most expensive players. Two Premier League titles and a League Cup later, Jose Mourinho is the last man to underestimate his own importance at Chelsea, and while he may have started this year making fewer bold predictions than in the past, his team still finds itself at the top of both the EPL and the Champions League. Sure, the Chelsea machine keeps rolling along, but how are the club's finances? Not so good, is the answer, but that hardly matters when the whole thing is a fun little game for its billionaire benefactor Roman Abramovich. Nevertheless Mourinho, feeling perhaps a tinge disempowered by utter dependency of the whole operation on Abramovich's funds, felt it necessary to let everyone know just how much he contributes to the club's bottom line. As if the silverware Mourinho and Co. have earned and the subsequent expansion of the club's worldwide fan base hasn't been enough, Mourinho also declared that he contributes 40 percent of his image rights to the club. In fact, Mourinho has no doubt he's worth every penny of his $9 million a year salary. "Call me vain, but I produce because there are titles and, in conjunction with them, merchandising in an incomparably superior proportion to what existed before I came here," he said, adding, "The seats in the stadium are the most expensive in English football." Yes but the club is still running an enormous debt, owing to its reckless spending, and is not expected to break even until 2009-2010.

Read the whole story at The Guardian »

Next story loading loading..