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Jun 10, 2013

Mourinho laments end of Fergie rivalry

New Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed he is disappointed not to have Sir Alex Ferguson as a rival once again next season, as he prepares to make his return to the Premier League.

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The landscape of English football has been transformed in the six years since Mourinho's first stint as Chelsea boss finished abruptly, with Ferguson ending his 27-year tenure at Manchester United last month.

However, the Portuguese is relishing the chance to renew his often hostile rivalry with Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

"I am disappointed that I am back and I go to Old Trafford and Sir Alex is not there, as a manager I am disappointed," Mourinho said.

"I am happy Wenger is there, of course I am. It is because he wants to be and the club want him to be, also the players and the fans. Even if they have not won a major trophy in many years, it shows how well connected they are. I'm more than happy."

Mourinho went on to discuss his new rivals in the Premier League, as he offered warm words for United boss David Moyes, former assistant Andre Villas-Boas at Tottenham, his ex-Chelsea colleagues Brendan Rodgers at Liverpool and Steve Clarke at West Bromwich Albion, and the reportedly incoming Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini.

"David has experience and protection by the club to do it well," he said of Moyes. "The three [former Chelsea] boys, Brendan, Steve and Andre, I'm more than happy to be in the same league as they are, and I'm more than happy to wish them all the best.

"Pellegrini is another man with great experience. It is the first time he moves to this country, but he has the maturity and quality to do a good job. I look forward to what the Premier League is."

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