After the announcement of his retirement from professional football on Wednesday morning, Mesut Ozil has named Roma coach Jose Mourinho as ‘the best of this century.’
The 34-year-old closed play on his magnificent career in the professional game, which included domestic cup titles in three different countries as well as being part of the German World Cup winning side of 2014.
In a feature interview granted to Marca, Ozil declared the ex-Inter and current Roma coach Mourinho as the greatest he has ever played under.
The Portuguese convinced the then-21-year-old Ozil to join Real Madrid from Werder Bremen in the summer of 2010 for a fee in the region of €15m.
And it was Mourinho’s intervention that eventually convinced the German international to sign for Los Blancos instead of a switch to Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona.
Ozil: “#Mourinho è il miglior allenatore del secolo. Scelsi il Real Madrid per lui”#ASRoma https://t.co/fvMxyBVZoK
— Forzaroma.info (@forzaroma) March 24, 2023
In his interview with Marca, Ozil explained: “For me, Jose Mourinho is the best coach of this century. His tactical understanding is on another level, but also his way of speaking in the dressing room and how he always protects his team in front of the media. He is truly a world class manager.
“I chose Real for him. He took me to see the stadium and all the trophies they had won. That gave me goosebumps. The visit to Barcelona was less exciting and what was most disappointing is that Pep Guardiola didn’t even bother to meet me.
“Before that trip I really liked Barcelona’s style and I could really imagine playing with them. So José Mourinho was definitely the biggest factor in my decision.”
High praise from the former world champion, whose three year spell under the special one clearly left a lasting impression.