SIR ALEX FERGUSON has jokingly suggested Jose Mourinho’s success is not fair while revealing his admiration for the Portuguese.
The Manchester United legend enjoyed a decade of head-to-head clashes with the Portguese as they battled in the Premier League, Champions League and domestic cup competitions.
Ferguson retired in May 2013, while Mourinho returned to England for a second spell with Chelsea later that summer.
After a trophyless second debut campaign at the club last season, Mourinho’s outfit look set for a return to silverware contention this time around.
His side edged three points clear at the top of the Premier League last night thanks to a 2-0 win at Stoke, and look well set to keep their place at the summit.
They are also well-placed in the Capital One Cup, with Champions League and FA Cup challenges on the horizon in 2015.
And, speaking to Clare Balding during a BT Sport documentary to be broadcast on Boxing Day, Ferguson revealed his appreciation of the Blues chief.
“It is unfair really,” he said. “He’s good looking, he’s got that sort of George Clooney bit in his hair now. But I think he is a great example, he can speak five languages or whatever he can.
“He goes and becomes an interpreter for Bobby Robson, follows him to Barcelona, works under Louis Van Gaal; he is learning all the time.
“He [Mourinho] has got a determination, he wants to be a coach.
“He never played the game, by the way – you tell me how many presidents would give a manager a job who has never played the game? None. But he has done it.
“Then he goes and manages a small team in Portugal, then goes to Porto and wins the league, wins the Uefa Cup, wins the European Cup, goes to Chelsea and wins the league. Goes to Inter Milan.
“That is an example to anyone who wants to do well, you shouldn’t let the barriers get in your way if you want to get there.”