Jose Mourinho wanted to “break” Arsene Wenger’s face following the Arsenal manager’s criticism of Chelsea selling Juan Mata to Manchester United in 2014, according to a new book written about the former Stamford Bridge boss.
Wenger questioned the workings of the transfer window and spoke out about Mata’s move from to Old Trafford, where he now plays under Mourinho once more, as Chelsea had already played United twice that season, but the Spaniard would be able to potentially hurt title rivals Arsenal.
The two then exchanged barbs over their respective title hopes – Manchester City eventually pipped Liverpool to the Premier League crown that season – culminating in Mourinho’s infamous “specialist in failure” jibe sent in Wenger’s direction.
However, journalist Robert Beasley alleged Mourinho’s anger over his counterpart’s behaviour remained.
Among the revelations documented in Beasley’s book ‘Jose Mourinho: Up Close and Personal’, he claims the Portuguese said: “When Mr Wenger criticises CFC and Man United over the deal with Mata…I will find him one day outside a football pitch and I will break his face.”
Beasley reported such violent intentions towards Wenger persisted when the two became involved in a shoving match during Chelsea’s 2-0 win over Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in October 2014.
Asking what was said in the exchange, Mourinho replied: “I told him, ‘Here you do that, you know I can’t react, but I will meet you one day in the street’.”
Mourinho’s antipathy towards Wenger, according to Beasley, also extended to accusing the Arsenal players of being behind the tactical plans that nullified Manchester City in a January 2015 win at the Etihad Stadium that helped Chelsea towards that season’s top-flight crown, along with a belief that Arsenal players Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott were “s*** with [Wenger]” and would be better off under his management.