Mourinho regrets not leaving Chelsea sooner

August 29, 2008
By Soccernet staff

Jose Mourinho has admitted that he regrets not leaving Chelsea sooner after revealing he had a chance to move on from Stamford Bridge before his relationship with the club broke down.

GettyImagesSteve Clarke was happier under Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge.

The new manager of Inter Milan claims he could have left the club on a high after the 1-0 FA Cup win over the Red Devils at Wembley in May 2007, as there was interest in his services.

Speaking in a video released by Ford's FeelFootball.com, Mourinho said: 'If there is a moment in my career where I regret a decision it was clearly the day after the FA Cup final - when my agent told me 'Club X' want you tomorrow and I told him no, I love it here and I don't want to go, I want to stay.

'That's the moment I regret. After that day, after that final, I should (have left) Chelsea and I would have the chance in Wembley to say goodbye to the fans and to say goodbye to English football. So that's a moment I regret because the next season lasted only a couple of months.'

The 45-year-old left Stamford Bridge in mid-September 2007 under a cloud, having drawn at home with minnows Rosenborg in the Champions League, but the Portuguese has declared his 'love' for the club.

'I only have friends in Chelsea and I have problems with nobody,' he said. 'But if I stayed there one, two, three, four more weeks probably in this moment I wouldn't say this.

'I love that club, I'm in the history of that club and I left the club in the right moment to feel like that and to say that honestly.

'So it was the right moment to do it. But clearly if I regret one decision in my career it's that decision of staying in Chelsea not one more season, staying in Chelsea a few more months.'