May 19, 2014, 1:20 PM EDT
Unless there’s a secret feud between the two, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has spared Louis van Gaal from the involvement of mind games in “The Special One’s” public comments on the hiring of Manchester United’s new boss.
Mourinho worked together with van Gaal at Barcelona in 1997.
“He is a great football manager and I am happy he joins me in the same country and the Premier League. But more important than that, he’s a great guy, a great man and I wish him good.”
Van Gaal is responsible for a great story regarding the outspoken Mourinho’s past as a reserved assistant:
“Ask my wife Hilda. In the first year [at Barcelona], I left Mourinho to analyse our opponents for the next game. Then he had to deliver the report at my home in Sitges. I myself was rarely home, because I was preparing the squad.
“When he rang the bell, Hilda always asked if he wanted a cup of coffee. He never once accepted. He would not take anything. Even so, he did bring presents for Hilda. But he did nothing else. At one point I asked Hilda why: does he not like Dutch coffee or he does not like something else? And the rest you can find out yourself…”
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