Chelsea vs Tottenham: Jose Mourinho refuses to comment on breakdown in friendship with Andre Villas-Boas ahead of London derby

Mourinho claims it is a personal matter and it will remain personal after the Spurs boss confirmed they are no longer friends

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho refused to respond to comments made by Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas ahead of Saturday’s Premier League clash between the former colleagues.

Villas-Boas worked under Mourinho at Porto, Inter Milan and Chelsea before forging his own career in management, with their friendship having since broken down since their days’ working together.

The Spurs boss confirmed in his pre-match press conference that he two no longer spoke, saying: "We had a great personal and professional relationship before that we don't have now.

"I don't think we need explanation on friendship and personal relationships. But our relationship broke down. I think we have the mutual respect for each other. But it's not like it was before."

But Mourinho has refused to elaborate on the break down, choosing instead to claim it is a personal matter that will remain personal.

"I don't describe (the relationship), because I'm not a kid to discuss relationships with the media. It's a personal thing,” Mourinho said.

"I don't care what he says. I'm here, not to comment on what he says or what to know what he says. I'm not interested."

There was an awkward end to the press conference though, after Mourinho was asked whether the “spirit” of Sir Bobby Robson, who is said by both men that he is seen as a type of mentor during the early days of their careers, would be at White Hart Lane at lunchtime tomorrow.

"Why?” said Mourinho. “Where (did) he work with Andre?"

Despite repeatedly being asked about his relationship with Villas-Boas, Mourinho continued to dismiss the questions, insisting that he would not go into detail about it.

"It's enough from me," Mourinho added. "I have nothing to say, nothing at all. "I'm not discussing here in front of you. For me there is no point.

"I'm not disappointed. I'm just here to speak about anything you want related to the game, not related to this situation."

Villas-Boas spent nine months in charge with Chelsea before he was sacked by owner Roma Abramovich Villas-Boas spent nine months in charge with Chelsea before he was sacked by owner Roma Abramovich  

Mourinho has come up against a number of his previous staff during his career – Villas-Boas is joined by Steve Clarke and Brendan Rodgers in the Premier League alone – and he claims that maintaining a professional approach when they face-off against each other is paramount, much like the 2010 Champions League victory when his Inter Milan side beat a Bayern Munich side guided by Luis van Gaal.

"I've had so many assistants in my career," said Mourinho, who was an assistant to Van Gaal at Barcelona after he took over the reins following Robson’s spell in charge.

"I was always an open book to all of them. I am an open book, after that if they want to read the book, or not, it's their problem, not my problem."

The matter ended when Mourinho was asked if he’d be enjoying a bottle of red wine with Villas-Boas once the game has finished.

"When people invite me, I always go," he said. "I never refuse."

Turning towards matters on the pitch, Mourinho agreed that Spurs are genuine contenders for the Premier League this season, and having already self-anointed them as “champions of the transfer market”, he feels they now have a squad that can compete at the top rather than last season.

Christian Eriksen has shone for Spurs since his summer transfer Christian Eriksen has shone for Spurs since his summer transfer  

"I think they are a big contender," Mourinho said. "They were the champions of the market, all of (those) international players with quality.

"When I analyse Tottenham as an opponent, I think they have a much better squad now than they had the season before.

"They have a much better squad and because you win titles with squads - you don't win titles with an especially good player - I think they are much more contenders than they were before."

The Blues go into the match after a 2-0 victory against Swindon Town in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday, although the success did come with its casualties.

Brazilian midfielder Ramires picked up a hip injury, having come off the bench to replace Marco van Ginkel after he suffered cruciate ligament damage in his knee, resulting in the Belgian undergoing surgery to have it repaired.

"The surgery went well. The doctor is happy with the way the surgery went,” Mourinho explained.

"Now he has to wait and he has to wait for a long time. It's very sad for a kid that was going into an important season for his development.

Marco van Ginkel only joined Chelsea in the summer, but faces at least six months on the sidelines after having surgery to repair damaged knee ligaments Marco van Ginkel only joined Chelsea in the summer, but faces at least six months on the sidelines after having surgery to repair damaged knee ligaments  

"Five months, six months, is a long time. To be back when the season is hot and when the clubs are playing crucial matches, to be back directly for that, we don't know."

Out-of-favour attacking midfielder Juan Mata played the full 90 minutes after he was left out of the Premier League squad that earned a lacklustre 2-0 victory over Fulham. Mourinho had challenged the Spaniard to show that he could adapt and play the style of football the Portuguese sees as Chelsea’s future, and the manager appeared pleased with what he saw.

"The last (Premier League) match against Fulham he was not selected," Mourinho said.

"If he keeps working that way (like at Swindon), adapting to my way of thinking, the football I want the team to play, the natural tendency is the opposite one, to be in the team."

News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
News
Destructive discourse: Jewish boys look at anti-Semitic graffiti sprayed on to the walls of the synagogue in March 2006, near Tel Aviv
peopleAt the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence