James Lawton: Mourinho, saviour with cynical streak

Click to follow

At his present rate of progress there seems to be a very good chance that Jose Mourinho will ascend to heaven, clutching an armful of trophies along with his favourite statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

At his present rate of progress there seems to be a very good chance that Jose Mourinho will ascend to heaven, clutching an armful of trophies along with his favourite statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

This, after his denial that he was involved in the alleged tapping-up of Arsenal's Ashley Cole, is at least one interpretation of his declaration that apart from any other achievements, he wants to reinvigorate the roots of English football. Yes, says Jose, he wants to win every prize in the firing line, but at the same time help the English team by making sure there is always a good blood count of home-grown players in his team.

In correctly reading this selfless stance clearly we have two options. We can see it as the most thinly disguised renewed attack on his rival, Arsène Wenger, who absurdly has spent most of the week in the dock for fielding a whole squad of foreigners - Chelsea, ironically enough, first set something of a precedent by fielding a team of foreigners more than five years ago, at Southampton - or fresh evidence that apart from being a brilliant man Mourinho is also a saviour of the national game.

You can take your pick, but perhaps not before speculating on what he might do if he finds himself in a major final and has to choose between a foreign or English player. Does Mourinho remain the patron of England - or does he do what Wenger did this week? Does he pick what he considers to be his best available team? Absolute dreamers are denied the vote.

Comments