John Terry admits he has clashed with Jose Mourinho because the Chelsea captain is under orders to always stick up for his players.
Mourinho taught Terry his golden rule when he made him Blues skipper two years ago.
Now he is also captain of England and still abides by the advice from his club boss and mentor.
Terry, 25, said: 'I learned many things from him but one is to always express my feelings and not be scared.
'One thing he said to me when he made me captain of Chelsea was: 'Don't be scared to stand up and have a go at me in front of the players.
'He said: 'That's the one thing you've got to do. Even if the players are in the wrong. It's your job to stand up for the players. They're your team-mates'.
'There have been a couple of times when I've had to step in.
'There have been times when I've had to stick up for myself when he's had a go at me.
'So I've had to do it for myself and other players.
'When the chips are down I'm there as the captain of the lads and it's important that we stick together as a team of players.'
Terry did not offer his backing to William Gallas, however, who left Chelsea for Arsenal last week and is now locked in a bitter row with the Blues.
Chelsea claim Gallas refused to play for them and threatened to score an own goal if he was picked.
Terry, in Macedonia to prepare for England's Euro 2008 qualifier, said: 'I will answer those questions when I'm back at Chelsea. I just want to talk about England now.'
Instead, he stressed Mourinho's great belief in the benefits of team spirit, something which could have been damaged if Gallas had stayed at Stamford Bridge.
Terry said: 'Jose does love a confrontation, yes! But he loves that unity thing as well.
'We talk about the need to play together and team spirit and he brought that in when he first came to the club.
'He told me to organise things off the pitch, like the go-karting sessions. He believes those things are useful and he's right.'
Terry has been told to impose the same style of captaincy on England by Steve McClaren.
McClaren listens to feedback from Terry and has changed some things from the way they were done under Sven-Goran Eriksson.
Terry said: 'It's even down to the small things like the lads travelling in tracksuits to and from games. They are a lot more comfortable than suits.
'We've had a small thing as well with mini-bars, just Cokes and oranges and things like that.
'In previous trips with Sven it wasn't allowed.
'But we're all grown-ups and if I wake up in the night and want a Coke or an orange juice I should be able to do that.
'It's about making sure every angle is covered so that when we go on the pitch it's down to the players totally, so we've got no excuses.'