Ricardo Carvalho gives insight into Jose Mourinho’s mind games with own players

Ricardo Carvalho followed Mourinho from Porto to Chelsea and to Real Madrid and the former Portuguese defensive rock has opened up on how his compatriot dealt with losing

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In pictures: Chelsea v Crystal Palace

Ricardo Carvalho has opened up on working with Jose Mourinho.

The former Porto, Chelsea and Real Madrid centre-back was a disciple of the now Roma manager and worked closely with him at all three of those clubs across nine years.

Mourinho is known for his demanding management style and Carvalho knows all about how the former Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur man dealt with things – particularly managing the mentality of his stars.

The trusted defender had a trophy-laden career while under ‘the Special One’ and in an interview with FourFourTwo , Carvalho revealed how he was treated, particularly in their time together in their native Portugal.

“I was always under the impression that he felt I could do better. I remember after the Panathinaikos game, he came to me on the bus and said that it had been my best match,” said the 43-year-old.

“The same thing happened after the final against Celtic: ‘You played well and had a mature game,’ he told me. It gives you a lot of confidence.

Mourinho and Carvalho during their time together at Chelsea


The Daily Mirror)

“He did that after we beat Manchester United 2-1 too, pulling me aside at training to tell me that I’d been the man of the match,” after Porto beat Sir Alex Ferguson’ side in a Champions League quarter-final.

“I worked with Jose for quite some time, and fortunately it happened on several occasions.

“[Laughs] It was a pleasure to work with him for so long, though, because he improved my game over the years.”

Carvalho also elaborated on how much being defeated affected Mourinho and the subsequent mood in his respective camps.

“He always wants his teams to play better than the game before,” stated the three-time Premier League winner.

“He doesn’t accept losses very well, and we knew how difficult it was for him to live with a defeat – you could see that during the week.

“So we did everything we could to achieve good results, as it would be easier to deal with him! But that’s normal – we players also want to win every game.

“If we lose, our own routine is affected by it.”

Although Carvalho eventually played for Real from 2010 when Mourinho rocked up at the Santiago Bernabeu, he could have done so much earlier.

Before his Stamford Bridge switch after Porto lifted the Champions League 2004, the defender had a conundrum.

“It took a while to finalise,” he said of the transfer. “I remember the first player to join Jose [at Chelsea] was Paulo Ferreira, who he’d brought from Vitoria to Porto.

“I’d been with Portugal at the Euros, and after we lost the final I went on holiday – that’s when I heard about Chelsea for the first time.

“But before that, there were some talks with Real Madrid,” Carvalho revealed.

“President Florentino Perez travelled to Porto and met Pinto da Costa, but they couldn’t do a deal.”

The defender chose to stay in blue but move to west London and the rest is history.

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