Jose Mourinho has disclosed that his managerial success can be attributed to the impact African strikers have had in his career.
The Portuguese tactician worked with some of the best African forwards, including Didier Drogba during his time at Chelsea and Samuel Eto’o at Inter Milan.
Before Drogba and Eto’o, Mourinho had South African forward Benni McCarthy in the Porto team that shocked Europe by winning the 2004 UEFA Champions League.
McCarthy was the star of the Portuguese team as they also won the league that season.
According to Mourinho, these African players have played a significant role in shaping his career.
“My success is always based on having an African striker. Without an African striker, I feel like I won’t succeed, ” the Portuguese said, as quoted by The Star.
“My belief about African strikers started with Benni Mccarthy at FC Porto, whereby he scored more than 20 league goals to help me and the club to win the Portuguese League title. In that same season, he scored very important goals for me in the Uefa Champions League that helped our careers to be well known in Europe by winning my first Champions League as a Coach,” he added.
Mourinho won multiple league titles in England, with Drogba as the leading marksman of his Chelseateam.
And in 2009, he managed to convince Barcelona to include Eto’o in a deal that saw Zlatan Ibrahimovic move to the Nou Camp. The Cameroonian forward starred as Inter Milan won an unprecedented treble, as reported by The Sports Legends.
He also worked with Emmanuel Adebayor at Real Madrid and young Ghanaian forward Felix Afena-Gyan at AS Roma.
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The former Super Eagles midfielder was signed by the Blues in 2006, with the former Real Madrid manager being the coach of the club at that period.
Under Mourinho, Mikel Obi played 119 games for the London side in two different spells and was one of the Portuguese manager’s most trusted players.