Chelsea vs. Arsenal rivalry was something else back in the day when the legendary managers, Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger were top of their game in the Premier League.
Like Sunday’s spectacle between Antonio Conte and Thomas Tuchel, it had the intensity as it saw Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger always at each other’s throats in the game.
For those who didn’t understand the rivalry, it would have been mistaken as a deep seated hatred both men had for each other on a personal level that transcended football.
They were always seen clashing on the touchline, or in press conferences ahead of the game or after the game.
Mourinho was captured laying jabs at his counterpart in press conferences, Arsene Wenger was also captured returning the same as their quotes always made the weekend news on Sports platforms.
It was funny, it was intense and football lovers loved it, as it marked the golden era of the Premier League as passion riled the game and feud boiled in veins.
But the former Arsenal boss, Arsene Wenger has opened up that those aggravations with Mourinho back then were due to them being rivals of different clubs with different philosophies.
According to Wenger, Chelsea started spending money ‘they didn’t earn’, and Wenger wanted Mourinho to make sure he knew it.
Wenger who now serves as FIFA’s Chief of Global Football Development revealed how it all began for the two of them on the touchline against the other.
It all started with Roman Abramovich, or more plainly, it was all about Abramovich buying over Chelsea back in 2003 when he sought out the Portuguese manager to be the manager of the Blues.
From then on out, the London club started spending wild in the transfer window, annoying Arsene Wenger.
Chelsea went and got the likes of Didier Drogba, Petr Cech, Arjen Robben, Ricardo Carvalho, Paulo Fereira, Matej Kezman and so many others in their first summer.
Speaking on it, Wenger said:
“My rivalry was more with the clubs than the persons, I never made any statements on a personal level,” Wenger told Sky Sports.
“I had a lot of aggravation with [José] Mourinho at the time because I felt that Chelsea were the first club that came in and spent money they didn’t earn.”