Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has revealed how he was approached by two Chelsea fans prior to his first arrival at the club in 2004 who simply told him "we don't want you here".
Mourinho, who eventually succeeded Italian Claudio Ranieri at Stamford Bridge after a successful stint at Porto, enjoys immense popularity among Blues supporters but it appears that may not always have been the case.
"I came to Stamford Bridge to watch Chelsea v Monaco, and there were already lots of rumours I would be the next manager," he told chelseapitchowners.com in an interview that was quoted by The Daily Mirror.
“I was walking in front of the Chelsea hotel, going to the stand to get my ticket and two people came to me and were telling me, ‘We don’t want you here, we love Ranieri’."
Mourinho did eventually replace Ranieri that summer of course and went on to enjoy tremendous success in his first spell with Chelsea, including back-to-back Premier League titles in 2005 and 2006.
Ever the confident optimist, the self-proclaimed 'Special One' claims he was confident even then that he could win over the doubters.
"And my assistant said to me, ‘We’ve got big problems’. I said, ‘No, the fans are good, they support their manager and probably one day it will happen the same with us’," he added.
Despite departing the club in disappointing circumstances in September 2007, the popular Portuguese made his return to Chelsea last summer and looks set to continue his period of success.
Ahead of the home tie against London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday evening, Mourinho's side currently top the Premier League with 63 points from their opening 28 matches.