Nemanja Matic: The moment Jose Mourinho made me feel "terrible" at Chelsea

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Football News

Jose Mourinho has forged a reputation for his hard-headed approach to football management.

Throughout stints at Chelsea (twice), Real Madrid and now Manchester United, the Portuguese has never been shy to make decisions that might rile his players.

At the Theatre of Dreams, for example, Mourinho recently dropped captain Wayne Rooney and exiled Bastian Schweinsteiger, ordering the German to clear out his first-team locker.


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Juan Mata is another to have suffered the wrath of Mourinho, who sold him at Chelsea in 2014 and threatened to do the very same when he arrived at United.

One player who Mourinho infamously embarrassed, though, is Nemanja Matic.

During last year's 3-1 defeat at home to Southampton, Mourinho introduced the Serbian powerhouse at half-time to shore up his midfield, only to take him off 28 minutes later.

The look on Matic's face as he left the field said it all.

With Mourinho now at United and Matic having rediscovered his best form recently, the 28-year-old recalled the incident and explained how it made him feel.

"I felt terrible to be subbed, to be honest," he said, per the Mirror. "I am a man first of all and of course I felt bad at that moment.

"But as you know, I didn't react, I stayed professional.

"Normally some of the players react to that and cause some problems but as you can see I didn't react and showed respect for the coach and for the club and my team. It was very hard. You have to play and see how it feels.

"I knew I did the right thing when I sat on the bench. I knew I did the right thing and I am proud that I didn't react."

Matic responded to the double substitution by refusing to celebrate a goal during a 3-2 defeat to Sunderland.

"If the team target is to be first, second or third, it is hard to celebrate when you are tenth in the table," the Serb added. "Of course I was happy to score, but our target is not to be tenth."

A dismal finish in the Premier League awaited Chelsea in the 2015/16 season, but under Antonio Conte this time around, they're back in business and currently fourth.

Matic continued: "As you can see, we have improved a lot game but that is normal.

"We had a new coach at the beginning of the season and every day we work on that to see what he wants from us and day by day, we are better and better and we show that on the pitch.

"We are in a good way. We are improving as a team. Also individually, I feel that everyone is one step better than before and much better."

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Wayne Rooney
Premier League
Nemanja Matic
Manchester United
UEFA Champions League
Didier Drogba
Eden Hazard
Jose Mourinho

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