Jose Mourinho v Rafael Benitez: The history of their rivalry in quotes
Last Updated: 30/07/15 7:55am
Rafael Benitez's wife has re-opened the war of words between the new Real Madrid manager and his old foe Jose Mourinho.
Montserrat Seara was quoted in La Region as saying her husband has spent much of his career tidying up the mess of Mourinho, but the Chelsea boss, who is no stranger to rivalries with opposition managers, did not take to the remark too kindly.
He responded: "The lady is a bit confused, with all respect. I'm not laughing. She is confused because her husband went to Chelsea to replace Roberto Di Matteo and he went to Real Madrid and replaced Carlo Ancelotti.
"The only club where her husband replaced me was at Inter Milan, where in six months he destroyed the best team in Europe at the time.”
It's certainly not the first time these two have crossed swords. Here we take a look back at their rivalry in quotes, dating back to Mourinho’s first season in English football and the 2005 Champions League semi-final second leg at Anfield…
“You can say the linesman's scored. It was a goal coming from the moon or from the Anfield Road stands." – Mourinho after Luis Garcia’s controversial ‘ghost goal’ helped Liverpool knock Chelsea out of the Champions League.
One thing is for certain. Benitez won't do better than me. Another thing is also true that should he lift the Intercontinental Cup, he will have only won two games compared to my 13. Therefore it will be my trophy and not his.
Mourinho on Benitez's Inter reign
Chelsea were pitted against Liverpool in the 2006 Champions League group stage, but the memories of the Anfield defeat still hurt Mourinho. "They didn't score in the semi-final against us but I accept they beat us."
Enough was enough for Benitez after Chelsea held Liverpool to a 0-0 draw in their first group game. "To me, Arsenal play much better football. They win matches and are exciting to watch. Barcelona and Milan too. They create excitement so how can you say Chelsea are the best team in the world?"
Mourinho suffered yet more semi-final heartache against Liverpool in 2006 but this time in the FA Cup. The Chelsea boss did not take the defeat well and refused to shake Benitez’s hand. "Did the best team win? I don't think so. In a one-off game maybe they will surprise me and they can do it. In the Premiership the distance between the teams is 45 points over two seasons."
A year later, the rivalry continued with Benitez taking a dig at the ‘Special One’ in April 2007. "We have our special ones here, they are our fans, who always play with their hearts."
Despite leaving Chelsea, Mourinho continued his war of words with Benitez, piling the pressure on then Liverpool boss. "How many championships has Benitez won since he joined Liverpool? None," Mourinho said. "And how many names were suggested by the press to replace him? None.”
Benitez took charge of Inter in 2010, succeeding Mourinho – who had won the treble the previous season – at the San Siro. The Spaniard told the Italian press: "There’s the coaches, first Mancini, then Mourinho and now me, and I hope to win more than them. We could win six trophies this season.”
Mourinho was adamant his rival would not to do better than him. "One thing is for certain. Benitez won't do better than me. Another thing is also true that should he lift the Intercontinental Cup, he will have only won two games compared to my 13. Therefore it will be my trophy and not his."
Mourinho went a step further, claiming he expected a thank you after Benitez led Inter to the 2010 Club World Cup. "I expected at least a thank you for the success that I gave him. Ask all the Inter fans what they think of me and him."
Mourinho took over from Benitez for his second spell at Stamford Bridge in the summer of 2013, just months after the Spaniard led Chelsea to the Europa League. However, Mourinho was less than impressed with the achievement. "I don't want to win the Europa League," Mourinho said. "It would be a big disappointment for me. I don't want my players to feel the Europa League is our competition."
Mourinho talks a lot about a lot of people, but I prefer to talk about facts. At Liverpool, with a squad half of the value of Chelsea, we twice knocked his Chelsea side out of the Champions League.
Benitez on Mourinho's European failure
Mourinho continued his verbal assault on Benitez’s Chelsea reign after Mourinho’s side beat Manchester City at the Etihad in October, 2013: "I watched every game of Chelsea against City in the last year. I saw the game at Wembley, the game at home, the game at City, I saw even parts of the friendlies in the States.
"Mental. Not tactical. Nothing. Mental. Afraid to assume. Afraid to go. Afraid to say we want to win, we can win."
Mourinho may have branded Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger a specialist in failure, but in 2014 Benitez wanted to look at the facts regarding the Chelsea manager’s record in Europe.“Mourinho talks a lot about a lot of people, but I prefer to talk about facts.
"At Liverpool, with a squad half of the value of Chelsea, we twice knocked his Chelsea side out of the Champions League.
"Later, with the most expensive squad at Real Madrid, he did nothing in the Champions League. Now he says if there is an offer of hundreds of millions for Hazard and Oscar, maybe he can build a strong squad to win something."