Jose Mourinho has expressed his admiration for England midfield duo Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard as he formulates his plans to get Real Madrid back to winning ways.
The Portuguese, who is set to be named as Madrid coach in the coming days after Manuel Pellegrini was sacked from the post on Wednesday night, also outlined his preference for full-backs in the mould of Ashley Cole and Maicon.
"Both (Gerrard and Lampard) are great players who always give everything," he said.
While Mourinho is also yet to officially leave Inter Milan, he has already spoken freely about his plans at big-spending Madrid.
Those plans could involve raids on his former clubs, Chelsea and Inter, after he spoke glowingly about Blues duo Lampard, 31, and Cole, 29, as well as Maicon - the 28-year-old Brazilian who helped Mourinho lead Inter to a trophy treble in 2009/10.
Mourinho has also previously admired 29-year-old Gerrard - he attempted to sign the Liverpool midfielder while he was in charge of Chelsea - and on Thursday described all four players as ideal to fulfil his ambitions in the Spanish capital.
"I like players in the final part of their careers," Mourinho told Spanish sports daily AS.
"I love to have some players who are 33 or 34 years old... they are players that you buy and you won't recover this money, but if they give you good performances for two or three years you've got your money's worth."
Mourinho added: "I like to play with four at the back, although my teams are always ready to play with only three - a system I have used to win many games over the years.
"But normally we will play with four, but with two offensive full-backs in the style of Maicon and Ashley Cole."
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