Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho gives assistant blessing to remain at Real Madrid

Aitor Karanka had been expected to move to Stamford Bridge

Jose Mourinho has given loyal assistant Aitor Karanka his blessing to remain in Madrid rather than head with him to Chelsea.

Mourinho's return to West London was confirmed on Monday after almost six years away from Stamford Bridge, with a number of his long-standing coaches installed alongside him.

Rui Faria, Silvino Louro and Jose Morain will all work under Mourinho next season but Karanka, who was such a trusty steed to the Portuguese during his often-stormy three-year spell in charge of Real Madrid, will be remaining in the Spanish capital.

"Aitor became one of us. He defended those working for us and the club. I wanted him to continue, but understand his decision," Mourinho told the Spanish football show Punto Pelota.

"He is a man of Madrid and if he continues as an assistant he will have much to contribute. He is our Spanish brother."

Mourinho's replacement at the Bernabeu has yet to be named, although former Chelsea manager Carlos Ancelotti is the frontrunner.

The Italian is currently with Paris St Germain but Mourinho expects the French title-winner to succeed him in Madrid.

"It is better for all, including the players, they are the most important," Mourinho said of the fresh start which is heading Madrid's way.

"They have support and a new start and project, with a new trainer, whoever it is. It seems to be Carlo to who I wish all the best."

Mourinho also checked out of Spain by adding he has no problems with Cristiano Ronaldo.

Reports often suggested the relationship between Mourinho and his star name was strained, but he moved to say any problems were only down to a desire to succeed.

"He had three fantastic seasons with me," he added.

"If I had a single problem with him, it was criticism from the point of tactics. I tried in my opinion to improve what could be improved. He did not accept it very well, because maybe he knows all and a coach cannot help."

PA

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