Mourinho: Chelsea landed Shevchenko after fail in Eto'o bid | inside World Soccer

José Mourinho has revealed that Chelsea flop Andriy Shevchenko was only signed after the Blues' bid for then Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o failed.

Andriy Shevchenko cost Chelsea £30 million, but he was branded a flop at Stamford Bridge
Andriy Shevchenko cost Chelsea £30 million, but he was branded a flop at Stamford Bridge

Photo: Getty Images

There were suggestions that Blues owner Roman Abramovich forced Mourinho in 2006 to sign Shevchenko from AC Milan for £30 million.

The Ukrainian hitman was one of the finest strikers in world football, but flopped at Chelsea and was never able to recapture the form that won him the 2004 Ballon d'Or.

"It's not true the owner forced him on me," Mourinho, who returned as Chelsea manager earlier this month, told reporters.

"Never, never during my time did the owner interfere in the basic things of the manager - training sessions, team selection, the profile of player I want to bring.

"Do you want to know the truth about Shevchenko? I hope the board is not upset with me. We wanted to buy Samuel Eto'o, he was our target. We wanted Eto'o and the owner was more than ready to do everything to bring Eto'o here.

"He was the player I wanted. Why? Because Eto'o was the only player I could play with Didier Drogba, changing the system for two strikers.

"But he was also ready to play with Drogba with the system we had at the time, with three attacking players with Eto'o coming from the sides. I did the same with him at Inter Milan.

"We wanted Eto'o and the boss did everything to bring Eto'o and (then chief executive) Peter Kenyon did everything.

"In the end, Barcelona said, 'We don't sell, forget it, forget it. Not any price'. The owner did everything to get him, but it was not possible.

"After that, we went to other options and got to Shevchenko. I was happy with him.

"Even with the top dogs - when you buy for £30 million, £40 million, £50 million, or £60 million - sometimes it doesn't work. It doesn't mean you or the club made a big mistake. It just doesn't work."

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