Mourinho embarrassment as his nick-name for Rooney is revealed
Jose Mourinho faces more potential embarrassment amid claims he called Wayne Rooney ‘fat boy’ as he attempted to lure him from Manchester United to Chelsea in the summer of 2013.
United manager Mourinho had concerted efforts to bring Rooney to Stamford Bridge following his return to Chelsea, with the London club convinced at one stage in negotiations that they would finalise a deal to sign the England striker.
The story ended with Rooney staying at United an eventually signing a lucrative new contract, yet claims in an explosive new book written by journalist Rob Beasley may make for uncomfortable reading for a manager and a player now working together at Old Trafford.
Recalling a conversation Mourinho had with Beasley’s 12-year-old son, the writer suggests the then newly appointed Chelsea boss had a somewhat colourful nick-name for his transfer target, in comments appearing in the Daily Mail:
It was clear that the Blues were now ready to go to £30million to sign Rooney, the magic figure they believed would seal the deal. Spirits were high.
I remember sitting in the lounge of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Washington DC having dinner with my son Joshua when Jose sauntered over. The next thing my 12-year-old lad knew, the Chelsea boss was pushing him along to squeeze into the chair with him.
Jose’s opening line was a corker: ‘What do you think of us trying to sign the Fat Boy?’
Josh was caught out for a second and didn’t cotton on to the ‘Fat Boy’ joke at first. I started laughing and told him: ‘He means Rooney — the Fat Boy is Rooney.’
For all his joking, Jose was a huge fan of the United striker and desperately wanted to sign him up.
It remains to be seen whether Mourinho will offer any comment on a book that appears to have been compiled from his off the record comments, with his claim that he wanted to “break his face” when refereeing to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger capturing plenty of headlines.