Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has spoken out on why he shook hands with Blues boss Antonio Conte prior to the Red Devils’ 2-1 victory at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.
It goes without saying that the two coaches do not get along with; many expected them not to shake hands after their rivalry escalated through a bitter war of words in the press.
Mourinho: ‘You have to respect each other’
Conte has previously branded his Chelsea predecessor “senile” and “fake”, while Mourinho has reminded the public that Conte has been accused of match-fixing in the past.
After the match, Mourinho insisted that regardless of what has happened in the past, it was very important for the two managers to show each other mutual respect and shake hands.
Speaking during his post-match conference, he said: “The handshake, before and after the match, I think is an example that everything in football you have to move and respect each other.”
“Mourinho and Conte, they are not two ordinary people in football. We have a history, we have an image and I’m really happy with that. I think that is what I and Antonio want to show to everyone.”
Conte: ‘It’s over’
Conte also weighed in on the handshake, telling reporters: “I think that you wanted to see the handshakes and we did at least, stop. It’s over.”
It was the Portuguese who would end up the happier of the two men on Sunday evening; Chelsea took the lead through a goal from Willian, but Romelu Lukaku equalised before Jesse Lingard went on to seal the three points for Mourinho’s men.
The win for the Red Devils means that the points gap between themselves and Chelsea has been increased to ten. The defeat also means that the Blues drop out of the top four and are now in fifth place in the standings, two points adrift of Tottenham. The result will surely only heap further pressure on Conte, who looks unlikely to keep his job beyond the end of the season.