Jose Mourinho has finally revealed the reason why he allowed Kevin de Bruyne and Mohamed Salah to leave Chelsea.
Mourinho is undoubtedly one of the greatest managers in the history of football, but the fact that he let De Bruyne and Salah slip through the net at Stamford Bridge will always count against him.
De Bruyne and Salah joined Chelsea in 2012 and 2014 respectively, but after a series of loan moves both moved on. The Belgian midfielder returned to the Premier League in 2015 with Manchester City, while Salah swapped Roma for Liverpool a year later. Both will go down as Premier League legends.
The common assumption is that Mourinho decided that neither player was good enough for his Chelsea team. However, while appearing on theObi One Podcast, the ‘Special One’ explained that that was not the case at all.
“They left because they wanted to leave. They left because they didn’t want to wait,” Mourinho told his former Chelsea midfielder Mikel John Obi.
“Their history proves that their option was good, because they did the career they did. They have reached a high standard. But sometimes kids, they do decisions like that because they don’t have the patience to be calm and wait for the right moments and sometimes their career goes in the wrong direction for them.
“When people tell me ‘you let go Salah go’, I say exactly the opposite. I bought Salah. I was the one who said ‘buy that guy’. He was going from Basel to Liverpool and I made the fight to make him to come to Chelsea.
“He didn’t want to wait, he wanted to go on loan and then Chelsea at a certain point decided to sell him. I was saying let him go on loan if he feels he needs to play every minute of every game.”
Mourinho then admitted it was a similar story with De Bruyne.
“He went to pre-season in Asia, we went to Indonesia and Thailand and Kevin [wanted to] go on loan to a German club and I told that club no, I don’t want him to go on loan I want him with me. He stayed with me and he started the Premier League playing, in the starting 11. After that game we played the Super Cup against Bayern and he didn’t play that game,” added Mourinho.
“The next day, he wanted to leave! And then we played the second game of the season at Old Trafford against Manchester United, I think we drew 0-0. He was on the bench, but he played some minutes and it was not enough for him. So he wanted to leave.”
The rest, as they say, is history. Salah and De Bruyne have achieved remarkable things at Liverpool and City, much to the annoyance of Chelsea fans.
However, perhaps it wasn’t Jose’s fault after all.