Mourinho admits departure comments

AFP-JIJI

Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho on Friday admitted that reported comments claiming his future lay away from the Spanish club were accurate but denied that he was “sad or unhappy” at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.

Earlier this week, media in Spain widely reported comments by Manuel Alvarez, the president of CD Canillas, a club from the north of Madrid where Mourinho’s son is a player.

Alvarez claimed that during a chat with Canillas coaching staff on Monday, Mourinho announced he would not be in Madrid next year to take part in the annual meeting.

At his Friday press briefing ahead of Real Madrid’s Liga clash with Betis on Saturday, Mourinho verified the comments — but encouraged reporters not to read too much into them.

“I can confirm that, when I was asked if I would be here next season, I said, ‘I don’t think so.’ I said that I didn’t think I could be there for next year’s meeting,” said the Portuguese.

“I am neither unhappy nor sad at Real.

“I have already said that my relationships with the president (Florentino Perez), with Jose Angel Sanchez (the sporting director), with the club, were good,” he continued.

“Normally, when you get to these situations, there are problems between the club and the coach but here that is not the case because we get on.

“The best thing for us right now is to beat Betis, get to the Champions League final and win the Copa del Rey final, and then after that we can discuss what is best for everyone.”

Madrid faces Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal next week and will face city rivals Atletico in the Copa del Rey final next month.

Throughout the course of his third season at the club, Mourinho has continually insisted that his future would not be decided until the closed season.

The former Chelsea and Inter Milan coach is under contract until 2016.

However, last week, Spanish daily El Pais claimed that Chelsea had made an offer to Mourinho in March in a bid to tempt him back for next season.

The paper added that Mourinho had not yet signed anything because of Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich’s refusal to hand him full responsibility for player recruitment.

Meanwhile, the Portuguese confirmed that Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas would again be on the bench against Betis as Diego Lopez continues between the posts.