Sport on TV: Put your shirt on Mourinho and he'll strip you of your dignity

The atmosphere inside the Nou Camp was febrile. The 91,000 Barcelona fans could not have made more noise if Montserrat Caballe and Freddie Mercury had been in the stands. As the Champions' League semi-final second leg (ITV1, Wednesday) kicked off in more ways than one, with the Catalans needing to score twice against Jose Mourinho's parsimonious Internazionale, Clive Tyldesley informed us that "after their league game here they wore T-shirts promising they would quite literally play out of their skins". We've heard of shirts versus skins, but shirts versus flesh, tendons and nerve endings – shredded ones in this case? The next thing you know, they would be literally on fire.

Mourinho must have heard about the ruse, as his enforcer Lucio almost literally tore the shirt of Zlatan Ibrahimovich's back and he had to go and get a new one. The Swede may not deserve to wear the shirt, as they say, but it was almost an immoral act, emblazoned as they are with the Unicef logo. Then again, it is an outrage in the modern era that a football club actually pays a shirt "sponsor" for the privilege of representing them. Just because they play every game as if it's a charity match doesn't mean to say they have to rub it in. Still, there's always the merchandise shops to do the necessary ripping-off.

Mourinho has never been one for humility but now he sought to humiliate Barcelona. He took exception to the Spanish press calling him "The Translator", his job for four years at the Nou Camp after Sir Bobby Robson took him there from Porto. Perhaps that's where Sir Robby Bobson's difficulties with players' names began. It was probably part of a master plan by the great tactician, as was his strategy to embarrass his former employers by resisting Barça with only 10 men and, even more outrageously, to take off one of the world's best players, Wesley Sneijder, and replace him with a former Portsmouth journeyman in Sulley Muntari.

At the end the Special One ran on to the pitch to cheer the 5,000 Inter fans who were stationed high up in the gods – and winding the other 91,000 spectators up at the same time, of course. Or perhaps he was actually celebrating with the gods themselves – he is that good, after all.



The BBC's ruse to "restage" the epic 1985 World Snooker Championship final between Steve Davis and Dennis Taylor may reflect how dull the sport has become these days, but it corresponds to a corporate PR stunt planned for Wimbledon when John McEnroe and Bjorn Borg are due to replay their showdown of 30 years ago. Will this catch on? Please could Michael Holding repeat "the fastest over of all time" to Geoff Boycott in Barbados in 1981? How about the penalty shoot-out against West Germany at Italia 90? Sadly, it won't change the result.

Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Office Administrator

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Office Administrator is requ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - Commercial Vehicles - OTE £40,000

£12000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion and growth of ...

Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer - Sheffield - £50,000

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer position with a...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Leader - Plasma Processing

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An Operations Leader is required to join a lea...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders