MX23RW : Tuesday, August 11 22:45:50| >> :60:1917:1917:
Jul 12, 2020 at 4.30pm UK at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
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Jose Mourinho reveals affection for Mikel Arteta

Jose Mourinho reveals affection for Mikel Arteta
© Reuters
Arsenal make the short trip to face Tottenham on Sunday.

Jose Mourinho says he cannot wish Mikel Arteta success this season despite his affection for the Arsenal boss.

Mourinho comes up against a man who was with him at Barcelona way back in the 1990s in Sunday's north London derby at Tottenham's new stadium.

It is a game that will go a long way to deciding who will achieve Europa League qualification, so Mourinho is tempering the niceties.

"I met Mikel when he was a kid in Barcelona. I was there with Mr (Louis) Van Gaal. He was really, really a kid," Mourinho said.

"When you know this kid at this age, time flies, but in the end you always look at them as the kid you have a great feeling for.

"When he became Pep's (Guardiola) assistant I started calling him every time I met him 'Mister', not Mikel.

"I like him very, very much. I hope everything goes well for him in his career but in this moment he is in a rival club, a club that fights for the same thing we fight – a European position – and I cannot wish him good in this position."

The pair may be at opposite ends of their managerial careers, but their current tasks across north London are pretty similar.

Both men took their job mid-season and are expected to build the club back into Champions League challengers after tough spells.

"The nature of his job is similar to mine, to Carlo (Ancelotti, Everton boss). You arrive in the middle of the season with a double focus, which is not easy," added Mourinho.

"On one side you want to get results immediately, but on the other side you have an eye on the future.

"What you want is to build your own team, what you want is to start your next season. When you are in a relegation fight, for example Neil Warnock going there (Middlesbrough), he knows that he needs a certain number of points, he knows what he has to do.

"In our case it is different, because we are speaking about very important clubs, clubs that want to do better in the future. It's half now, half in the future.

"We all are desperate to have the end of season, holiday, preparation, pre-season and start a new season. The reality is we have to fight for points, which means Europa qualification and a special rival feeling between Arsenal and Tottenham."

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Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Winks and Arsenal's Sokratis Papastathopoulos clash on September 1, 2019
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CLiverpool38323385335299
2Manchester CityMan City382639102356781
3Manchester UnitedMan Utd381812866363066
4Chelsea382061269541566
5Leicester CityLeicester381881267412662
6Tottenham HotspurSpurs3816111161471459
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves381514951401159
8Arsenal381414105648856
9Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd381412123939054
10Burnley38159144350-754
11Southampton38157165160-952
12Everton381310154456-1249
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle381111163858-2044
14Crystal Palace381110173150-1943
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton38914153954-1541
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham38109194962-1339
17Aston Villa3898214167-2635
RBournemouth3897224065-2534
RWatford38810203664-2834
RNorwich CityNorwich3856272675-4921

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