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Sports News of Thursday, 23 September 2021


Mourinho almost forced team to train with shinpads because of Essien - Wright-Phillips

Michael Essien and Jose Mourinho Michael Essien and Jose Mourinho

Former Chelsea midfielder Shaun Wright-Phillips has stated that Jose Mourinho nearly forced the team to train with shin protection because of Michael Essien's aggressiveness.

Speaking to Bonus Finder, the ex-Manchester City star stated that training was quite hard under 'The Special One,' especially when the Ghanaian joined in 2005 from France.

"The tempo was completely different when I moved to Chelsea," he said. "There was a real step up in quality as well.

"It only got worse when Michael Essien joined because Mourinho was at the point where he was thinking about getting the players to train with shin pads on. There was so many tackles flying in and training was really competitive so I don't think we would have blamed him if Mourinho made that decision," he added.

"To get the chance to play with players like that and win trophies with that team was a dream come true for me," he continued. "It helped me to improve as a player.

"It was a period that was an amazing time. The fans were superb, Roman Abramovich was amazing and Mourinho... I thought he was a fantastic manager and a great man in general," he ended.