James Lawton: Like it or not, Mourinho deserves our admiration

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The Independent Online

If it is true that when you first look into the mirror and feel a frisson of lust you are falling into a life-long affair, let's hope Jose Mourinho has learned the value of an occasional cold shower.

If it is true that when you first look into the mirror and feel a frisson of lust you are falling into a life-long affair, let's hope Jose Mourinho has learned the value of an occasional cold shower.

Certainly his expression at Stamford Bridge, when Chelsea took a huge stride to the Premiership title, spoke of dangerous levels of narcissism.

It was said of the young Graeme Souness, by team-mates at Anfield, that had he been a chocolate bar he would have wolfed himself down long before he made his firstcrunching tackle. Mourinho suggests a whole banquet waiting to be consumed.

This though is no reason, no more than his sickening behaviour during the Barcelona Champions' League tie, to question the brilliance of his campaign.

There have been noises at Old Trafford and Highbury suggesting Mourinho has stolen a lucky start; that next season an alerted Manchester United and Arsenal will rein in his Chelsea.

Ryan Giggs, despite a 15-point gap, even said that United remain a superior team. Arsène Wenger, makes thinly veiled allusions to a negative Chelsea.

Dream on, gentleman. The crown soon to be worn by Mourinho marks a brilliant debut in the English game. We should, even if its peeves the Special One, be concentrating most on the work of his players. The revelations on the field of Terry, Lampard, Duff and Joe Cole this season say more about Mourinho the coach than all his preening.

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