Former Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho jokingly remarked that his and Mateo Kovacic’s paths have never crossed despite their careers following similar journeys.
Speaking on talkSPORT, Mourinho made a classic cheeky comment about how he and Kovacic have never worked together.
The £40m (BBC Sport) midfielder joined Chelsea permanently in 2019, following a campaign on loan from Real Madrid.
Of course, both clubs have been under the stewardship of Mourinho at some stage in the past decade.
He took charge of the Blues on two separate occasions, winning a trio of Premier League titles, and managed Madrid between 2010 and 2013.
Interestingly, both Kovacic and the 58-year-old coach also have a link to Inter Milan.
Mourinho managed them to Champions League victory 11 years ago, a few seasons before Chelsea’s Croatian intentional joined.
Jose the joker
“Kovacic is top of the top,” said the Portuguese boss.
“Kovacic, I always feel he is much better than what people think.
“I’m very upset with him because he’s played for every club I’ve been at, but never with me.
“He played for Madrid, but now with me. He played for Chelsea, but not with me. He played for Inter, but not with me.
“I love the guy and the guy follow my clubs. Maybe he goes to Tottenham next season!”
Kovacic to Tottenham?
If Mourinho’s timeline is correct, Kovacic will be signing for Spurs and then Roma.
Of course, Chelsea would like to disrupt this movement for now.
Thomas Tuchel placed plenty of responsibility upon the Croats shoulders following his arrival at Stamford Bridge in January.
His midriff was built around Kovacic, N’Golo Kante and Jorginho, with others filling in around them.
But stranger things have happened in football and who knows, Mourinho might be mystic after all.