Mancini is ruffled by Mourinho’s job jibes

Italian dismissive of his rival following Real manager's mischievous comments this week

Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, dismissed Jose Mourinho's barbed claim – that the Real manager would not have made it back to Madrid had his side been eliminated like City from the Champions League – as another meaningless utterance from a man who "wants to talk about everything".

Mourinho's sly and unmistakably malicious declaration before City and Real Madrid faced each other that Mancini's team would suffer an elimination which was "abnormal" for a club of their wealth, was followed up post-match by the Portuguese's claim that their failure was "amazing". It felt like a job application. "I've always said how much I like my time here and I always like to be back," Mourinho also said in Manchester.

It was unpleasant stuff, in the week when two more Premier League managers have been sacked, and though Mancini did not go quite as far as to say "hands off my job" to Mourinho, it seemed to be the sentiment towards the man who replaced him at Internazionale. "Mourinho is not my chairman. He is not my owner. What Mourinho said is for me not interesting," Mancini said. "Mourinho wants to talk about everything. For me, it is not important."

In one sense, Mancini – who faces another stern test of his credentials at Stamford Bridge tomorrow – is right. City's new chief executive, Ferran Soriano, has expressed a public dislike for Mourinho's habit of creating conflict through the media. He and his sporting director Txiki Begiristain – both formerly of Barcelona and now reunited at City – decided that Mourinho's method "generated media conflict almost permanently and it was a potential source of conflict within the club", as Soriano has put it. It is precisely why they appointed Pep Guardiola, rather than Mourinho, to replace Frank Rijkaard at Barcelona.

But Soriano has also publicly compared Mourinho to Guardiola, another shadow in the background for Mancini, as those who "make their players grow professionally and at a personal level. They generate the optimal conditions and state of mind for that to happen." If there is a flaw in Mancini's management, then it is failure to do this.

When it was put to Mancini yesterday that his problem is that he holds a job everyone covets, he replied: "Mourinho is the Real Madrid manager. When one manager has a job – in Manchester, in Madrid, or with a small team – it's important that he is able to do his job well." The Italian revealed he had not spoken to his "disappointed" chairman, Khaldoon al-Mubarak, since Wednesday night's defeat meant he had failed to deliver on a pre-season target of reaching the Champions League knockout phase.

He also asked for a reality check on how far his club had come, so soon. "Yes ,[people forget] we are Manchester City, not Real Madrid or Manchester United, or Bayern Munich, who used to win every year for 100 years and have big history. We are Manchester City and for 35 years we didn't win, but in two years we won three trophies."

Mancini revealed he had spoken "many times" to Rafael Benitez after the Spaniard sought his advice when considering taking the Internazionale job, when Mourinho vacated it.

"He asked me a few things about Inter," Mancini said. "[I told him] 'you need to be very strong, because Inter is a top club in Italy – [it's] not the same passions as there is in England.'"

Mancini may need to be strong, too. He hinted he believes the loss of the Touré brothers to the African Cup of Nations may justify more spending in the January transfer market. The view from the top of the club is that there will be no such outlay this winter.

Suggested Topics
Arts & Entertainment
Madonna in her music video for 'Like A Virgin'
music... and other misheard song lyrics
News
Waitrose will be bringing in more manned tills
newsOverheard in Waitrose: documenting the chatter in 'Britain's poshest supermarket'
News
The energy drink MosKa was banned for containing a heavy dose of the popular erectile dysfunction Levitra
news
News
Much of the colleges’ land is off-limits to locals in Cambridge, with tight security
educationAnd has the Cambridge I knew turned its back on me?
VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Sport
Australia's Dylan Tombides competes for the ball with Adal Matar of Kuwait during the AFC U-22 Championship Group C match in January
sportDylan Tombides was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2011
News
Ida Beate Loken has been living at the foot of a mountain since May
newsNorwegian gives up home comforts for a cave
Extras
indybest10 best gardening gloves
News
Russia's President Vladimir Putin gives his annual televised question-and-answer session
peopleBizarre TV claim
Arts & Entertainment
tvIt might all be getting a bit much, but this is still the some of the finest TV ever made, says Grace Dent
Arts & Entertainment
Comedian Lenny Henry is calling for more regulation to support ethnic actors on TV
tvActor and comedian leads campaign against 'lack of diversity' in British television
News
Posted at the end of March, this tweeted photo was a week off the end of their Broadway shows
people
News
peopleStar to remain in hospital for up to 27 days to get over allergic reaction
Arts & Entertainment
The Honesty Policy is a group of anonymous Muslims who believe that the community needs a space to express itself without shame or judgement
music
News
Who makes you happy?
happy listSend your nominations now for the Independent on Sunday Happy List
Life & Style
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players
Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

The all-rounder has been hailed as future star after Ashes debut but incident in Caribbean added to doubts about discipline. Jon Culley meets a man looking to control his emotions
Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

The most prize money ever at an All-Weather race day is up for grabs at Lingfield on Friday, and the record-breaking trainer tells Jon Freeman how times have changed
Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

Mad Men returns for a final fling

The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit