Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has held a press conference on Friday at the AON training complex in Carrington after a three-day trip in Dubai ahead of the Monday night game against Stoke.
That was the first time Mourinho has faced the media since Antonio Conte called him a ‘little man.’
Both Chelsea and United managers have been embroiled in a bitter war of words this month since Mourinho accused some Premier League bosses of acting like ‘clowns’ on the touchline, which led to Conte to suggest that the Portuguese coach has senile dementia.
The former Juventus carried on a bitter war of words with Mourinho, branding him ‘a little man’ and ‘fake’ after the Manchester United boss brought up his rival’s match-fixing controversy in Italy.
Here’s a reminder of what the Chelsea boss said recently:
“I think before you make this type of comment before to hurt another person, you must pay great attention.
“You show you are a little man. A little man. You don’t know very well [what] is the situation. But I know him very well in the past. In the past he was a little man in many circumstances, is a little man in the present and for sure he will be a little man in the future.
“Also if he wants to try to change his behaviours … but the person’s this, Mourinho’s this. You know him very well. The level is very low. I repeat: I think before to speak you have to know very well what happened.”
Asked about all of this, United’s manager José Mourinho called an end to the war of words between himself and Antonio Conte, saying he has nothing but contempt for the Chelsea manager.
He said: ‘‘I think when a person insults another, you can expect a response. Or you can expect contempt, silence.
‘‘The first time he insulted me I had a response; a response that I know touched the point where he really feels hurt.
‘’‘Then he insulted me for a second time, but now I change. Now contempt and, for me, contempt means end of the story.’’
While Mourinho signalled he wanted to put an end to the feud with Conte, he gave an update on striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The 36-year-old has made seven appearances since his return from injury but hasn’t featured since Boxing Day and Mourinho confirmed he was set for several more weeks on the sidelines.
He said: “Zlatan is injured. Or not totally happy with his condition. He consulted our doctors and made the decision to stop.
“The date for him to be back training with the team was around the end of January and beginning of February.”