Prague: Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho responded tetchily to a series of awkward questions on the eve of the Uefa Super Cup clash with European champions Bayern Munich.
The outspoken Portuguese was unhappy about comparisons with his old rival, Bayern counterpart Pep Guardiola, at Thursday’s news conference and seemed irritated by yet more questions about the future of Spain playmaker Juan Mata.
When one reporter suggested Mourinho had only beaten the former Barcelona manager three times in 15 meetings, he responded by recalling a string of victories he had enjoyed with Inter Milan and Real Madrid.
“Your statistics are very wrong,” he said. “Go and see what happened when I was with Inter in the Champions League semi-final, the King’s Cup final with Real in Spain, the Super Cup in Spain.
“Maybe you are right and I am wrong but I don’t care. This is not about Pep and me, it’s about Chelsea and Bayern.”
Another reporter said that while Barcelona under Guardiola were portrayed as beautiful, his former Real team were generally viewed in less flattering terms.
“If you want to ask questions about Chelsea I am here,” said a clearly irritated Mourinho as he tapped the club crest of the Europa League winners on his white training top.
“If you want to ask questions about Real or Barcelona then I’m not here.”
Meanwhile, opponent manager Guardiola said he would like to work in England one day ahead of their clash with Chelsea.
“I feel I am a young trainer, just 42, so later I would like to go to England,” Guardiola said.
“For experience, to live there...but it is football fantasy. I am here for this final and that is what is important right now.”
Guardiola praised Mourinho, a former sparring partner when the Portuguese was at Real Madrid, but played down the significance of their long-standing rivalry.
“We are lucky that tomorrow the focus will be on the players,” he said. “The reason why kids love the game is for the players not the coaches.
“I have lots and lots of respect for his career and I have to try to learn from all the coaches around the world.
“I did my best in Barcelona and I will try to do my best here. The records I might remember when I’m a grandfather but not now,” added Guardiola.
The two men were often at loggerheads during their time in Spain but Guardiola denied the battle with Mourinho was the reason for his Barcelona departure.
“In four years with Barcelona we had won everything,” said the Spaniard. “That was the reason.
“I needed a little pause in my head. My enthusiasm at the club was not the same and that is why I decided to rest a little bit.
“That is why when Bayern came to me, I said I wanted to try this experience.”
The Chelsea squad are still adapting to life under Mourinho, who left Real for Stamford Bridge in the close season to succeed Rafael Benitez.
The Londoners have had an extra day to prepare for the Super Cup after drawing 0-0 at Premier League title rivals Manchester United on Monday.
Mourinho can call on Brazil defender David Luiz for the first time this season following a hamstring injury while Spain playmaker Juan Mata could come back into the side after being left on the bench at Old Trafford.
Chelsea's new signings from Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala, Cameroon striker Samuel Eto' and Brazil midfielder Willian, are not in the 26-man squad.
Bayern playmaker Bastian Schweinsteiger has travelled to Prague but faces a race against time to recover from the ankle injury he sustained in the 1-1 Bundesliga draw at Freiburg on Tuesday.
Holding midfielder Javi Martinez is also in the squad despite having had an abdominal injury.