John Terry has backed his former manager to be a success at Manchester United, before then calling him “best manager” he has ever played under.
The Chelsea captain has worked with Mourinho across two spells at Stamford Bridge, first between 2004-07, where the Portuguese coach won back-to-back league titles in his first two seasons in English football, before leaving the club in the early weeks of the 07/08 season.
The 53-year-old then returned to Stamford Bridge again in 2013, guiding his team to a Premier League title and League Cup victory in 2014/15.
But, despite the calamity that was Chelsea during Mourinho’s spell with the club the season just gone, Terry is in no doubt that United have picked the right man to lead the club forward after seeing Louis van Gaal lose his job.
“It’s fantastic news for Manchester United,” said Terry, speaking at the Horan and Rose charity dinner on Sunday.
“I’m sure that United’s fans and players will be delighted with that because, as I’ve said many times before, he’s the best manager I’ve worked under.
“It was unfortunate the way it ended at Chelsea this year but I wish him well because he’s also a great man. He’ll be great for Manchester United, I’m sure.
“The weather is slightly different maybe… but it’s a fantastic place to be and I’m sure he’ll settle in well with the likes of Ryan Giggs – hopefully he’ll stay and support him as well.”
It had looked as if Terry’s time at Chelsea was coming to an end with silence surrounding his contract scenario, before now Blues boss Antonio Conte decided to offer the 35-year-old a new one-year contract.
Now that his short-term future with the club is sorted, he is set to lineup against Mourinho in the Premier League for the first time in his career – something he admits will be a relatively strange experience.
“It’ll feel very different,” said Terry. “I’ve come up against Jose for various teams before so it will be interesting.
“He’ll get a great reception when he comes back to Stamford Bridge, for sure. First and foremost we have to look at ourselves this year and fight for the title.”
With the fixtures for the upcoming Premier League season set to be released on 15 June, Mourinho’s first trip back to SW6 as United boss is bound to be one of the most anticipated encounters of the season.