Lionel Messi has received heaps of praise from former Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho. The Portuguese manager believes that the Argentine genius makes winning easier but is adamant that the team’s mentality takes precedence.
The 28-year-old has won 26 trophies with Barcelona including four Champions League titles. Mourinho claims that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner made it easy for three of his former managers to win the Europe’s premier competition.
“First of all it’s about individual players. Just to give you an example, Messi won the Champions League with three different managers,” he said in an interview with BT Sport.
“I think it’s easier to win with him, than against him. I am a football manager. I know that sometimes people think that the individual is more important than the team.
“But when I feel that it is time for me to take a permanent holiday – I still think that the team is more important than anything.
“But the obvious reality is that there are some players who can make a difference.”
Barcelona are on the right track to become the first club to retain the Champions League trophy. They are through to the quarter-finals after beating Arsenal over the two legs.
Mourinho has been without a club since he left Chelsea in December and hopes to return to work ahead of next season. The legendary manager did not reveal his next destination but he is certain that he will join his new club this summer.
“Yes I was lucky enough to have good options since I left Chelsea in December – not just options but good options,” the Portuguese added.
“But I made a decision to wait calmly. The reality is that I want to work. July, mid-July, new pre-season starts and somewhere, I want to be there.”
According to many reports in the media, Manchester United have agreed terms with Jose Mourinho and the veteran manager is already scouting players to bring at Old Trafford. Louis van Gaal has a limited number of games left in his Premier League career. The Dutchman’s reign at the club will be deemed as a failure if the Red Devils fail to book a berth in the next season’s Champions League. The 20-time English champions are hanging by a thread in the FA Cup and it is the only realistic trophy that they might win by the end of this season.