Football Expert & Columnist
Arsene Wenger revolutionised Premier League, says Jamie Carragher
Jose Mourinho is class, says Carra, but it's Arsene Wenger who transformed English football.
Last Updated: 21/12/13 9:33am
Mourinho is always in demand, while Wenger has been linked with various teams and national jobs since he joined Arsenal in 1996, and if both men were on the market tomorrow I think every club would try their hardest to get hold of them.
They are two managers I would have loved to have played under as you always want to learn from the best.
I have played under some very good managers, don't get me wrong, but you always look at the success other teams have and see how big an influence their managers have had.
Wenger and Mourinho always intrigued me - even though they seem like very different characters - because they have been at the top of the game for so long, but I think the Arsenal boss has brought more to English football than any other foreign manager.
Wenger, one of the first overseas managers in English football, has helped Arsenal massively off the field by getting his players to live their lives in the right way, while on it, he has led them to Premier League and FA Cup Doubles.
He changed the face of English football by giving opportunities to youth players and was really the first one to corner that young, foreign market with stars such as Patrick Vieira, who went on to become a legend at that club.
If you're looking at the Premier League era as a whole, you'd have to say that Wenger's 'Invincibles' team that went through the 2003-04 season unbeaten were the best side we've seen.
Not only were they full of great footballers but they had real physicality, power and pace, too; they were a team that had everything - expect a Champions League win, something they probably deserved to get because they were certainly good enough.
Wenger has also been very astute in the transfer market; all managers have signings that don't go too well but he has purchased great footballers without spending millions upon millions.
However, he has shown his ability to adapt by bringing in some more high-profile names recently - Mesut Ozil is the standout this year, but Per Mertesacker, who has 95 caps for Germany, and Mikel Arteta have made a difference with their experience, too - and Arsenal now look capable of winning the league again.
Mourinho, though, has brought real excitement ever since he turned up and had his first press conference; we weren't quite sure what we were going to get when he arrived but he was an absolute revelation.
There was no settling-in period needed and he took the Premier League by storm, winning back-to-back titles to prove that when he said he was 'The Special One' he wasn't lying, and wherever he goes now you expect him to lift trophies.
Chelsea are yet to find their best form since he came back, yet they will overtake an Arsenal side we have been raving about if they win at the Emirates on Monday and Jose always has this knack of getting the best out of players.
Mourinho nurtured Joe Cole into one of Chelsea and England's best players for a period, which shows as well as being tactically aware he is also a terrific coach who can improve players that are very good to start with.
The team he had when Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard and John Terry were at their peak was so strong and resilient, got so many wins, points and clean sheets, and was one of the best in Europe.
Wenger and Mourinho's records speak for themselves but it is hard to say who the better manager is, with one staying at one club for such a long time and the other switching teams every two or three years and getting different experiences.
You could say Mourinho might edge it because he has two Champions League wins, but Wenger probably deserves to have those, too, so it's a close run thing.
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