Before Jose Mourinho was sacked as Chelsea manager after losing out to United for the title despite starting the season as favourites, he laid in to Cristiano Ronaldo. Grown man Mourinho made a dig at Ronaldo’s ‘difficult childhood’ and ‘lack of education’.
After leaving Chelsea and watching Ronaldo enjoy a truly fabulous season with United, he conceded if Ronaldo won a trophy or two, he should certainly be named the best player in Europe.
“The player of the year must be the best of the year but he must also be a winner,” Mourinho said in April. “I don’t think he can be a player without a big trophy. Clearly what Ronaldo did in the season was magnificent. I think by far, or by some distance, he has been the best player in the Premiership but for me the best is always a winner because football is a collective sport. If Man United do something important by winning the Premiership or by winning the Champions League I would say – and not just me, the whole football world – give the trophy to him.”
With Ronaldo being awarded the Ballon d’Or yesterday, it seems as though Mourinho has had a change of heart.
“I have no praise for Ronaldo,” said Mourinho. “I would have preferred one of my own foreign players to have won the Ballon d’Or.”