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Jose Mourinho: ‘I decided I want to go to Fenerbahce’

Portuguese already plotting how to guide Fener through Champions League qualification in 2024/25

Manager Jose Mourinho at a football match

Jose Mourinho says he has decided he wants to join Fenerbahce but the deal is not done yet.

The Turkish giants confirmed earlier on Saturday they were in talks with the 61-year-old Portuguese, who was sacked by Roma in January.

Speaking to Sky Sports as he arrived at Wembley ahead of the Champions League on Saturday afternoon, Mourinho said the deal was ‘not yet’ complete, adding: “I decided I want to go, but it’s not done yet, I cannot confirm officially. I want to go.”

He later hinted on TNT Sports that he may be flying to Turkey on Sunday morning.

Mourinho won the Champions League with Porto and Inter Milan but admits it would be hard to guide Fener through the qualifying rounds to make the 2024/25 group stages.

He said: “It is hard because we have three rounds to go in qualification and in Fenerbahce’s case eight players are in the Euros and they are not coming for pre season before the first round so it’s hard.

“If I go then, you know I like challenges, so if I go I want to fight to be in the Champions League,” he added.

Roma did lift the 2022 UEFA Europa Conference League title under Mourinho to maintain his record of winning a trophy with every club he has managed – bar Tottenham – but lost the 2023 Europa League Final on penalties against Sevilla.

Mourinho is set to replace out-of-contract Ismail Kartal who lost only one of his 38 Turkish Super Lig games in charge of Fener this season and amassed 99 points, but still finished second, three points behind bitter rivals Galatasaray, the third straight season the club have finished as runners-up.

Mourinho will be reunited with several former players including Edin Dzeko – whom he managed at Roma before he was sold to Inter – as well as Fred, whom he signed at Man United while he will be only too familiar with 23-goal Michy Batshuayi who had a six-year spell at Stamford Bridge after Mourinho’s second spell at the Blues ended.

Mourinho had been linked with a job in Saudi Arabia and will appear as a pundit on coverage of the UEFA Champions League Final between Real Madrid and Dortmund on TNT Sports coverage in the UK.

Picture of Alex Hoad

Alex Hoad

Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.