'What can I do? Fight everyone?': Jose Mourinho bullish ahead of Europa League final

Jose Mourinho Roma Europa League Final
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Jose Mourinho has said he is unfazed by criticism ahead of managing Roma in the Europa League final against Sevilla on Wednesday night, the Portuguese manager clearly relaxed in demeanour. 

After beating Bayer Leverkusen 1-0 on aggregate in the semi-finals, plenty of analysts were disapproving of Mourinho's tactics in the second leg, which saw Roma defend resolutely and maintain just 28 per cent possession in a 0-0 draw. 

Mourinho, though, is unperturbed as he looks forward to assembling a starting XI to lift the Europa League trophy at the Puskas Arena in Budapest.

"Who questions me? I don't care," Mourinho told BT Sport. "What can I do? Fight everyone?

"No, I cannot do it. I work super hard and try my best - that's my education, that's what I do everyday. My history is there, nobody can delete it. But it's also my philosophy of life, I have a final to play on Wednesday, and I will do everything possible to try and win it."

When it comes to European finals, Mourinho is a serial winner. Only last year did he lead Roma to the Europa Conference League title. What's more, the 60-year-old has won all five European finals he has been involved in as a manager, but Sevilla are six from six in Europa League finals. On Wednesday, something has to give. 

Despite that, though, he is certainly confident and determined to deliver Roma another continental trophy. When asked how he's managed to lead Roma to their second European final in consecutive years, Mourinho points back to the basics. 

"Working hard, motivating players to work hard, believing and never giving up, even in the difficult moments," he said. "You have to always think what happened before is history, and if you want to be successful in football you have to work with the same ambition as day one.

"We enjoy, we fight, we work and we'll go and play that final well. There are clubs where of course a final is just one more final, but for Roma it's not just one more final, it's a very special moment."

Disregarding the UEFA Super Cup, Mourinho has only ever lost one final in his entire managerial career: the 2018 FA Cup with Manchester United. The Portuguese has been triumphant in 13 finals, an astonishing record he is hoping to improve upon with Roma in the Europa League on Wednesday night. 

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Ryan Dabbs
Staff writer

Ryan is a staff writer for FourFourTwo, joining the team full-time in October 2022. He first joined Future in December 2020, working across FourFourTwo, Golf Monthly, Rugby World and Advnture's websites, before eventually earning himself a position with FourFourTwo permanently. After graduating from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism and Communications, Ryan earned a NCTJ qualification to further develop as a writer while a Trainee News Writer at Future.