Reuters Soccer Blog

World Soccer views and news

Unimaginative Inter could have taken punt on Cassano


Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho has again lamented the lack of a playmaker* following Sunday’s 1-1 home draw with Bari in their Serie A opener.

Creativity was already a problem for the champions last season and now talented striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has left for Barcelona, it is difficult to see where inspiration is going to come from judging by their Super Cup defeat to Lazio and the Bari draw.

Samuel Eto’o is a goalpoacher while Dejan Stankovic, who occupies the role behind the front two, is a hard-working midfielder at best.

Mourinho has said the club is working to bring in a playmaker before the transfer window closes but with Deco too pricey at Chelsea and Wesley Sneijder looking happy to bide his time at Real Madrid, the options are limited.

Why Mourinho is raging at Lippi


Jose Mourinho is no stranger to run-ins with rival club managers, but this week the Portuguese raised his aim and had a swipe at Italian national team boss Marcello Lippi.

The Inter Milan coach had taken exception to Lippi tipping Juventus for this year’s Serie A title.
He accused him of lacking respect, arguing a national team coach should be seen to be impartial even if deep down he wants Juve to win (Lippi had two glorious stints at the Turin club split by a dismal, short one at Inter).

‘Special One’ makes few friends in China


If Inter Milan were intending their trip to Beijing for last week’s Italian Super Cup to be a China charm offensive, coach Jose Mourinho was obviously not kept in the loop.

The accepted form for European club officials on pre-season trips to China is to politely praise everything local and talk up the footballing potential of the world’s most populous nation.

Mourinho is back and his tongue is sharper than ever


Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho has interrupted his holidays to remind soccer fans what they have been missing in the month since the end of the season.

The outspoken Portuguese, whose side are favourites for a fifth straight scudetto this term, has far from mellowed while lying on the beach.

Is Ancelotti the right man for Chelsea?


As impressive as two Champions League triumphs are, Chelsea’s appointment of former AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti will not leave their Premier League title rivals quaking in their boots.

Ancelotti ended his reign at Milan on Sunday after eight years, following top flight stints at Parma and Juventus, all of which amounted to just one Serie A scudetto.

Mourinho the magician does it again with Inter


A Champions League with unfancied Porto, two Premier League titles with Chelsea — the first in fifty years — and the scudetto with Inter Milan in his first season.

Is there anything Jose Mourinho can’t do?

Roberto Mancini, who led Inter to the last three titles, should take a lot of the credit but Mourinho didnt try to stamp his authority on the team too much. After a bit of an experiment at the start of his reign, he realised Mancini’s tactics were the best with the personnel available.

Mourinho goes all shy on us


Jose Mourinho has finally met his match.

I’ve never seen the Inter Milan boss look so timid and uncomfortable as when he was confronted by a pole dancer on a famously bizarre Italian TV show.

He looked away as the half-naked beauty strutted her stuff, twitching in his chair and scratching his ear to try to avoid embarrassment.

Even Mourinho can’t halt Serie A decline as England dominates


The sight of Serie A sides flopping in the Champions League has become a familiar one and although the three teams eliminated this week were a little unlucky, a mental block against English opposition is developing.

Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho, who won the trophy with Porto in 2004, was hired in June largely to boost their hopes of challenging Europe’s elite after years of failure.

If Inter are the best in Serie A…


My dad was a sports journalist too so he has seen a fair few matches in his time.

After Inter Milan’s 0-0 Champions League draw with holders Manchester United at the San Siro, he sent me a very abrupt text message.

Who is most likely to follow Hiddink at Chelsea?


Interim Chelsea coach Guus Hiddink is adamant that he will be leaving at the end of the season to concentrate on the Russia job.

Chelsea fans who had been hoping the Dutchman would decide to stay must now start contemplating a fourth manager in two years.