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Arsene Wenger V Jose Mourinho: The Greatest Quotes From A Vicious Rivalry

Chelsea's Portuguese manager Jose Mourinho (R) and Arsenal's French manager Arsene Wenger (L) are kept apart by the fourth official Jonathan Moss during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in London on October 5, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ADRIAN DENNIS

Two of the Premier League’s highest-profile managers do battle again this weekend as Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal take on Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.

However, this could well turn out to be the least competitive meeting between these two for some time, as with both involved in cup competitions in the coming weeks and the Premier League title long beyond them (as, perhaps, will be the top four depending on other results this weekend), this match may be seen as something of an afterthought for both Wenger and Mourinho.

Nonetheless, at the very least personal pride will be on the line this Sunday, and while relations between the two have been uncharacteristically amicable in the build-up to this tie, that could well change depending on the result.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 19: Arsene Wenger, Manager of Arsenal (L) and Jose Mourinho, Manager of Manchester United (R) walk towards the tunnel after the final whistle during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford on November 19, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Wenger and Mourinho’s dislike for each other is one of the Premier League’s most infamous feuds, and neither has been shy in putting the other down to make a point. In doing so, they have provided some of the most memorable quotes the English game has ever heard.

Wenger, August 2005. Brutally effective 1-0 wins had become a staple of Mourinho’s first title win at Chelsea but his Arsenal counterpart was not impressed in the slightest:

“I know we live in a world where there are winners and losers. But once a sport encourages teams who refuse to take the initiative, then the sport is in danger.”


Mourinho, October 2005. Wenger had started a war with his jibes at Chelsea and Mourinho, and it was one that the Portuguese manager was more than up for, delivering perhaps his most notorious slight of the Gunners boss in late 2005:

“I think he is one of these people who is a voyeur. He likes to watch other people.

“There are some guys who, when they are at home, have a big telescope to see what happens in other families. He speaks, speaks, speaks about Chelsea.”

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho (second right) greets Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as he emerges from the tunnel to mark his 1000th game in charge of Arsenal  (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Wenger, November 2005. His response to Mourinho’s “voyeur” comment was to go into full-on attack mode.

“He’s out of order, disconnected with reality and disrespectful. When you give success to stupid people, it makes them more stupid sometimes and not more intelligent.”


Mourinho, November 2005. Mourinho replies by claiming that Chelsea are making note of everything Wenger says about them:

“At Stamford Bridge, we have a file of quotes from Mr Wenger about Chelsea football club in the last 12 months – it is not a file of five pages. It is a file of 120 pages.”


Mourinho, April 2008. Despite being sacked by Chelsea months earlier, Mourinho was still in the mood for a bit of Wenger-baiting in a book entitled “Born Winner.”

“The English like statistics a lot. Do they know that Arsene Wenger has only 50 per cent of wins in the English league?”

Mourinho, February 2014. The other infamous shot from Mourinho to Wenger, dismissing the Frenchman as a “specialist in failure” when it was put to him that Wenger was accusing him of downplaying Chelsea’s title hopes that season.

“Am I afraid of failure? He is a specialist in failure. I’m not. So if one supposes he’s right and I’m afraid of failure, it’s because I don’t fail many times. So maybe he’s right. I’m not used to failing. But the reality is he’s a specialist because, eight years without a piece of silverware, that’s failure.”


Mourinho, July 2016. He was barely in the door at Old Trafford (his first press conference in fact) and he was pouring petrol on the feud yet again.

“There are some managers, the last time they won a title was 10 years ago, the last time I won was a year ago,” he said.

“I feel I have to prove – not to the others – to myself. I will never be able to work without success. That’s my nature. If I have something to prove, imagine the others! To finish 4th is not the aim.”

Finishing fourth may not have been the aim for either club in July, but ambitions have had to be lowered somewhat as the season has worn on.


On this week’s episode of the Mixer Irish Football podcast, we catch up with Cillian Sheridan, review all the latest fixtures and look ahead to this week’s League of Ireland matches.

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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.