Tammy Abraham has hailed Jose Mourinho as the ‘best manager in the world’ and credited his boss for pushing him to ‘be better’ as he enjoys a stunning season at Roma.
Abraham joined Roma on a five-year deal worth £34million last summer after struggling to cement his place in Thomas Tuchel’s starting XI at Chelsea.
When asked whether Mourinho’s role as the Roma manager encouraged him to sign for the club, Abraham told TalkSPORT: ‘It [Mourinho] was a factor involved, yes.
‘As a young English lad I wanted to stay in England. Rome came along and Atalanta and many different teams around the world, I was telling myself I wanted to stay in the Premier League and that I had something to prove.
‘But my dad, parents and agent sat me down and said, “you scored goals at Chelsea, Swansea and Bristol City, go and test the waters, go and experience life abroad”.
‘When they were speaking it kind of dawned on me that not many players can say they’ve gone out in Italy, to Serie A and a team like Rome.
‘I never back down from a challenge so when this challenge came along I thought as I’m still young this is the best time for me to go and do it.’
Mourinho challenged Abraham to be ‘better’ for Roma despite the fact he scored a match-winning brace in their derby against Lazio recently.
‘Great performance,’ Mourinho told DAZN after Roma’s 3-0 win. ‘Today was really special because it seemed that everything we had planned was put on the field.
‘Lazio in the second half tried to play with pride but we never lost control. No doubt, the boys deserved the victory.
‘When you say Abraham is fantastic, I disagree, he can do even more. I demand a lot of him because I know his potential, I’m not talking about goals but he must play every game with this attitude.’
Some players would have felt dejected following Mourinho’s comments, but Abraham is using the remarks as motivation.
When asked about Mourinho’s statement following Roma’s victory, Abraham said: ‘You know Mourinho’s a character that we all know.
‘There’s a reason why I call him the best manager in the world. He knows how to drive you, he knows how to get under your skin and he knows how to make you feel like a very special player at times.