Mourinho not concerned by United threat

Last updated at 11:20 08 April 2006

Jose Mourinho has warned Manchester United of the danger of trying to snatch Chelsea's Barclays Premiership crown - by relating a Portuguese tale.

Analogies have been drawn between Chelsea and Devon Loch, the horse which famously collapsed 50 yards from the winning post in the 1956 Grand National.

Devon Loch was so far ahead that defeat looked impossible and with Chelsea seeing their 18-point lead pegged back to seven by United, the similarities going into Grand National weekend are obvious.

But while Mourinho is aware of one of the most inexplicable events in sporting history, he chose to liken Chelsea's battle with United to a swimming race.

"I will tell a Portuguese story because in Portugal there is no Devon Loch. We are on the beach and we get on a boat," he said.

"The boat is one mile from the beach. I jump into the sea because I am a good swimmer and someone wants to race me. I swim to the beach in different strokes.

"I get to the beach and walk out of the water. My rival gets to the beach and dies of a heart attack.

"We call it 'To Die On The Beach' because the man should not chase me. He should ask the boat to take him a little bit further before jumping in."

Giant step towards title

Victory over West Ham at Stamford Bridge tomorrow would see Chelsea take a giant step to a second successive Premiership crown, while United have it all to do against Arsenal.

But the Blues have dropped four points in their last four matches with Mourinho displaying his frustration at the slump by theatrically ripping up his tactical notes during the match against Manchester City.

"The book is for one game only. I write it in the first half to give structure to what I tell the players at half-time," said the Chelsea boss. I don't use the book in the second half. At the end of the match I throw it in the garbage.

"At Porto I used to sign it and throw it to the crowd. I don't do that here in case it falls into the wrong hands. I was very unhappy at the Manchester City game. We won the game but in the second half we were drawing 0-0 against 10 men. I saw selfish play in that match."

Didier Drogba added to Chelsea's problems by admitting after the 2-0 victory over City that he sometimes dives to fool referees, sparking a debate on cheating.

But Mourinho said: "This is the best country in relation to diving. You can't compare it with other countries. In other countries it is not just attackers who dive, but defenders do as well. I have not talked about diving to any of my players.

"I don't like to win matches by the referee making mistakes because players create difficult decisions. But I also don't like to lose matches like that either."

No comments have so far been submitted. Why not be the first to send us your thoughts, or debate this issue live on our message boards.

We are no longer accepting comments on this article.

Who is this week's top commenter? Find out now