Two of the biggest names in Premier League history Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger will face each other for the final time in Premier League football after Arsene Wenger announced his decision to quit as the Arsenal manager at the end of current season. Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho has been one of the most epic Premier League managerial rivalries where both managers have not been shy about delivering verbal jibes at each other. Jose Mourinho vs Arsene Wenger battles have set the tone for Chelsea vs Arsenal and now Manchester United vs Arsenal battles. Although the duo has managed to find solace in recent months and with Wenger retiring from Arsenal, Jose Mourinho has found a softer tone to his voice when speaking about Arsene Wenger earlier this week when he referred the Arsenal manager as a true gentleman and someone who will be greatly missed when he decides to quit Premier League at the end of this season. However, over the years, Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho verbal jibes have been a theme whenever these managers have squared off against each other and today we take a look at the 5 times both the managers engaged in a war of words and gave us a classic Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho moment.
1). Jose Mourinho is a danger to Premier League, says Arsene Wenger
Back when Jose Mourinho had arrived in the Premier League, Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho battle was at its peak where both managers had lashed out pretty harsh words against each other. Back in February 2005, Mourinho accused Wenger of not fielding any English player in one of the Premier League game to which Wenger responded rather angrily and claimed that Jose Mourinho is a greater danger to the Premier League than he ever will be.
Wenger said: “I don’t see that Chelsea play more English players than we do. Who have they produced, homegrown? Just one, John Terry. I know we live in a world where we have only winners and losers, but once a sport encourages teams who refuse to take the initiative, the sport is in danger.”
2). Arsene Wenger is Voyeur, says Jose Mourinho
Being dangerous to the Premier League comment was never going to be taken lightly by Jose Mourinho as then Chelsea manager responded a few months later with a rather pinching comment for Arsene Wenger and took the Jose Mourinho vs Arsene rivalry to a new high. Mourinho labeled Wenger as a “Voyeur” – A man who takes pleasure at watching others and talking about others.
Mourinho said: “Wenger has a real problem with us and I think he is what you call in England ‘a voyeur’. He is someone who likes to watch other people. There are some guys who, when they are at home, have a big telescope to see what happens in other families. Wenger must be one of them – it is a sickness. He speaks, speaks, speaks about Chelsea.”
3). Arsene Wenger is a specialist in failure, says Jose Mourinho
Soon after the “Voyeur” incident, Mourinho left for Iner Milan and Real Madrid but Wenger and Mourinho were set to collide once again after Jose Mourinho returned to Chelsea in the 2013/14 season and Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho rivalry got a fresh start. All the years when Mourinho was not in the Premier League, Wenger-Mourinho rivalry continued to be on the boil with Arsene Wenger once commenting on the disgust of Mourinho’s Real Madrid players taking intentional yellow cards to avoid suspension in latter stages of the Champions League season. Cut to Mourinho’s arrival in 2013/14 season in EPL, Wenger and Mourinho started to exchange jibes at each other where Wenger claimed Mourinho is afraid to lose games that is why he always paints the picture of an underdog to which Mourinho labeled Wenger as a “Specialist in Failure”.
Mourinho said: “If he is right and I am afraid of failure it is because I didn’t fail many times. Eight years without silverware, that’s failure,” he said. “He’s a specialist in failure. If I do that at Chelsea, eight years, I leave and don’t come back.”
4). Get used to being outspent by other teams, suggests Arsene Wenger
Following an up and down stint with Chelsea, Jose Mourinho signed with Manchester United and saw Manchester city outclass him to win the 2017/18 Premier League title. While City were better than the entire league, Mourinho believed it was City’s spending power which led them to win the title with ease. Arsene Wenger did not let this opportunity go by without reminding Mourinho this was the exact same situation which he had been facing at Arsenal for a number of years and suggested Mourinho get used to the feeling.
Wenger said: “I have been in that position for 21 years, so I will not start to complain now,” Wenger said. “There is always one team, sometimes four, who were richer than I was, so I learned to cope with that and to deal with that.”
5). The infamous Arsene Wenger vs Jose Mourinho touch-line tussle
While all the previous Jose Mourinho vs Arsene Wenger clashed were merely verbal, but October 2014 saw these managers take their animosity to the extreme when teh manager literally got into a fist fight on the touchlines after Wenger pushed Mourinho after a heated altercation on the touchlines. Chelsea beat Arsenal 2-0 that day and won the mental battle as well after Wenger decided to let loose on his emotions.
Wenger later apologized for his actions and said: “Looking back, I think I shouldn’t have reacted as I did and it is not at all the way I behave on a football pitch.
“I always regret the slightest sign of violence and I apologise. But it is also part of these matches where everything is over-charged and there were problems before the match.”