Jose Mourinho talks about the UEFA Champions League Final, Sir Alex Ferguson and his lifelong passion for football | European Conference League

At 59, Jose Mourinho has won almost everything to win in club football and could complete a run of current UEFA Club Cups if his side in Rome beat Feyenoord in their first Europa League final in Tirana on May 25.

In addition to many local titles, the Portuguese coach won the European Cup and the Champions League in successive seasons with Porto, before clinching the 2009/10 Champions League title at Inter Milan, and crowning the 2016/17 European League with Manchester. united.

Mourinho is yet to lose in a major European final and, as he told, his yearning for success remains as strong as ever.

On the final contender Feyenoord

They’ve played 14 matches like us, beating tough opponents. [For example], the semi-finals with Marseille – a team with European history and Vélodrome, one of the most fascinating and difficult places to play as an opponent. You can only give them credit.

Finals 50-50, but we’ll do our best to make it 51-49. It should be during the match, not before. The work leading up to the final over several months is the basis of those 90 or 120 minutes. that it [the players’] day; We’re just there to provide a little help. I’ve been lucky so far [in winning all of my European finals]: My players have reached the finals that we have. In the moment of truth, they were always there.

Roma vs Feyenoord: Latest

On the UEFA Europa Conference League

Rome’s road to the congress league final

I am a manager with a history and Roma is a big club. I felt a little responsible trying to do this [the first edition of the tournament] Big competition. So, little by little, we continued to realize our ambition to go as far as possible. Then, we proudly saw that the semi-finals were held in crowded stadiums, with [a total of] 170,000 fans in attendance.

The Conference League is our Champions League. That’s the level we’re at, the competition we’re playing at. The club has not arrived [an occasion] like this for a long time.

On the possibility of winning the first title of Roma in the European Football Association

Roma vs Feyenoord: Flashback 2015

Roma vs Feyenoord: Flashback 2015

We have to forget [the fact that we could win our first UEFA trophy]. For me, you need to treat the final as an individual game that brings with it stress, tension and a sense of responsibility. We just need to think about the final and the opposition we’re up against and we’ll forget all about the history of Rome, how amazing the city and the club would be but all of us if we win the match. .

Roma vs Feyenoord: Match Preview

On being the first coach to reach all four current UEFA club finals

Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford in 2013

Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford in 2013Getty Images

If I go on to win four European Championships with four different clubs, I will never forget the first, which is [1996/97 UEFA] Cup Winners’ Cup as assistant coach to the late and great Bobby Robson in Barcelona. Every time I sat next to him [in the dugout]I felt proud.

Does each new achievement mean more than the previous? Yes it is. The first win can be achieved by being in the right place at the right time. Winning the second time is harder than the first time, and winning the third time is harder than the second time. Achieving success and winning in a specific time period is one thing, achieving success and winning consistently throughout your career is another.

On his continued passion for the game

The match between Manchester United and Real Madrid [in the round of 16 of the 2012/13 Champions League] And before the match, [Sir Alex Ferguson] He invited me into his office, which later became my private office, and I asked him, “What does it look like, boss? Does it change? Does it change over the years?” He said, “Forget about it. Nothing changes. It’s the same until the last day.”

That’s why I keep saying I can’t believe I’m 59 years old. I can’t believe I have 21 or 22 years as a head coach. I can’t tell you when I’m going to stop because I can’t imagine it. Passion does not change.

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