Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has explained how Jose Mourinho’s arrival at Chelsea changed the picture for Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United.
The arrival of the Portuguese boss in West London saw the Blues hit a purple patch of form and trophies, lifting back-to-back Premier League titles, two League Cup’s and the FA Cup.
In that same period, Chelsea also had some huge nights in the Champions League, losing in the semi-finals to Liverpool in 2005-06 and 2006-07, which saw him miss the chance of bringing a European trophy to Stamford Bridge.
As Neville explains, those defeats in the big matches to Liverpool ultimately affected Chelsea’s ranking compared to the other great club sides of English football.
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However, they made a lasting impression on the former United defender as he explained how they affected the Red Devils during that period.
“I think that’s the only time during my period at Manchester United were Sir Alex Ferguson had to settle down for a few years. He knew that he was against a special manager, who was on a roll, against a fantastic team,” he told Sky Sports.
“I think he had to sit back and play second fiddle for Jose for a few years, knowing we just couldn’t compete with them, there was the period of Arsenal’s Invincibles, Jose’s team for that couple of years were fantastic.
“We didn’t win the league for three years, which is the longest period that Sir Alex Ferguson ever went without winning the league beyond his first three years at the club, and Jose’s one regret of that period will be that he didn’t win the Champions League with that team.
“We all know the stories of the games with Liverpool, the spite with those games, he knows that his legacy at Porto and Inter Milan, that Chelsea team was certainly the equal of those…