Mourinho relishing reunion with Clarke

Jose Mourinho admits he is relishing the opportunity to take on former assistant Steve Clarke when Chelsea host West Brom on Saturday.

The duo worked together during Mourinho's first spell at Stamford Bridge, winning two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and two League Cups over three seasons between 2004 and 2007.

And Mourinho is looking forward to this weekend's master-versus-apprentice clash in the Premier League.

"I am very happy to meet Steve Clarke again," he said. "He’s a special guy in my career.

"It’s very difficult to play against his teams because they defend very well. This season they stopped Arsenal winning and won at Old Trafford.

"We stay in touch but not speaking about our jobs directly."

And the Portuguese believes he had a positive influence on the Scot's career.

"I think he had a good experience with me," he continued. "He was more than an assistant coach, he was in control of training, match preparation, so he had a very good experience as assistant manager.

"He knows that every match he plays I am with him and hope he wins, obviously tomorrow that is not the case."

Clarke had earlier told The Sun: "The greatest compliment I can give Jose is to say in the time we worked together I changed completely.

"I learned more with him than with all the other coaches put together who I'd worked with.

"The day I took leave of him was hard," he added. "What is most certain when you start a job as coach or manager is that one day the mission will come to an end.

"Fortunately, I developed a good relationship with him. We still talk, not every day, but regularly, be it about certain games, certain players or our families.

"That's why I say to Jose that he should continue his good work and I thank him for the help he's given me."