Monday, May 22, 2017

Mourinho nears Inter hot-seat after Moratti meeting

SoccerNews in Serie A 31 May 2008

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Former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is close to being named the new boss of Inter Milan according to Italian press reports following the release of pictures of the Portuguese coach meeting with Inter president Massimo Moratti in Paris.

The lunch meeting allegedly took place on Friday with other Inter officials also reported to have attended.

Gazetto dello Sport claimed on Saturday that the meeting was held to discuss transfer targets, more specifically a 30-million-euro (46.6-million-dollar) bid for Barcelona's Cameroon striker Samuel Eto'o.

Italian news agency Ansa claimed Mourinho will sign officially at the beginning of next week, before heading out to Japan to take charge of a Rest of the World team for Hidetoshi Nakata's testimonial on Wednesday.

Mourinho has been out of the game since leaving Chelsea by mutual consent early last season.

He had won two Premier League titles with the London club, the FA Cup and two League Cups in just over three seasons.

Before that he coached FC Porto to the Champions League crown, UEFA Cup, two league titles and a Portuguese Cup in an incredible two-year period from 2002-2004.

Mourinho is expected to replace Roberto Mancini who was sacked as coach of the Serie A champions on Thursday, despite having just led them to a third successive league title.

The 43-year-old former Italy international striker, is consequently favoured to take over at Chelsea.

Inter had been heavily criticised for the way they dealt with Mancini's sacking, posting a terse and uncomplimentary message on their website.

But Moratti moved on Saturday to try to improve Inter's image by finally thanking Mancini for the success he brought the club, which included two cup wins.

“There has been thanks from me for the work he did. I told Mancini personally and I'm repeating it now,” said Moratti.

However, he then repeated criticism of Mancini for announcing his departure immediately following Inter's Champions League second round elimination at the hands of Liverpool in March, before retracting it a day later.

“That statement caused many problems at Inter and destabilised the team,” added the president.

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