Arsene Wenger decided to join in the mind games today by suggesting that Jose Mourinho did not think Chelsea as a title contender because of the fear of failure. Ahead of Arsenal’s FA Cup match with Liverpool on Sunday, Wenger said: “It’s a fear to fail. If you’re not in the race you cannot lose it, if you declare yourself not in the race you cannot lose it, simple as that.”
Mourinho has responded brilliantly to those comments. Speaking ahead of Manchester City’s match, he branded Arsene Wenger as a ‘specialist at failure’. Mourinho said:
“He is a specialist in failure, I am not.
“If he is right and I have a fear of failure it is because I don’t fail many times. So maybe he is right?
“The reality is he’s a specialist because eight years without a piece of silverware, that is failure. If I did that in Chelsea I would leave London and not come back.”
Wenger is unlikely to win a war of words with Mourinho without ending his trophy drought. He may be the manager of Arsenal, but he has little in his arsenal (in the last eight years) to challenge a manager like Mourinho. Perhaps, he could win the argument of playing better football, but it is always a subjective matter.
STATISTIC: Since 2004, Mourinho has won 14 trophies. Wenger has one.
Mourinho, then, has hit Wenger where it hurts – his ego.
The Portuguese has also said that he does not want eight years to build a team. “I just say if Mr Abramovich gives me eight years to prepare a team, which I don’t want him to give me, I just want my contract of four years and after that deserve or not another contract. In eight years you have to build so much, so much, so much,” said Mourinho.
Chelsea’s next match – against Manchester city in the FA Cup – will see us go without John Terry and most likely Gary Cahill. Despite this, Mourinho says that the club will be going there looking for a win.
Tomorrow’s match against City will decide the winner of the mind games. A victory and everyone will laud Mourinho. Lose and Wenger gains the upper hand.