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Alarm bells sounding for Everton

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Valdano surprised by calls for action against Mourinho

Real Madrid director general Jorge Valdano has expressed surprise after the State Commission against Violence called for the Spanish federation to take action against Jose Mourinho and Manolo Preciado.

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Mourinho and Sporting Gijon boss Manolo Preciado were involved in a war of words ahead of the sides' meeting at the weekend, with the Madrid coach having criticised Sporting for fielding a weakened team against Barcelona. Preciado responded by saying Mourinho would have been "thrown in jail" for his comments had he still been in England and labelled him a "swine".

The anti-violence commission asked for the "appropriate disciplinary measures" to be taken against the coaches as they "contributed to a hostile atmosphere between the participants and spectators, the result of which being that the match has been reclassified high-risk. It is necessary to catch these incidents to avoid them being able to occur in the future."

However, Valdano feels Mourinho behaved reasonably throughout the affair and that Preciado should apologise.

"We have great appeal for the media and so does Mourinho," he said on the club's official website. "It can give way to agitated controversy given Mourinho's personality and what Real Madrid represents.

"I honestly believe Mourinho put the arguments of his reply in context and they haven't, as of yet, been refuted. He forgot to mention the Spanish FA Code and its 75th Article, which clearly stipulates this sort of thing. I believe this debate has been nourished enough. One coach used solid arguments while the other used defamation. Both statements can't be regarded to be at the same level.

"Mourinho shouldn't stop being Mourinho. He was hired for his personality and he can express his feelings whenever he wants as long as he doesn't overstep his mark. We don't want to point fingers at who should be punished.

"This debate has been started again today and Preciado still has time to apologise for overstepping his mark. Just the other day, he said he had been unfortunate in the way he expressed himself. I now hope he does the same regarding his use of the word 'swine'."

Cristiano Ronaldo, meanwhile, has hailed Mourinho after his impressive start to life at the Bernabeu.

"Everyone envies Mourinho, which is normal because he is the best," he said in Marca. "It is fantastic to work with him. He doesn't do anything special - he is a discipline coach and he pays attention to the details. It's amazing."

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