Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho has sent a message to former Chelsea colleague Steve Clarke ahead of Scotland’s match with Serbia.
The pair worked together whilst the current Tottenham boss had the Chelsea reigns, Clarke a coach at the time. Now the Scotsman leads his nation into a Euro 2020 play-off final in Belgrade.
Victory over Serbia on Thursday would secure a major tournament place for Scotland for the first time since 1998. Clarke’s men are in good form ahead of it, unbeaten in eight matches.
Some may say there are similarities between Clarke and Mourinho’s styles, both setting up to be hard to beat with defensive philosophy. The former Chelsea coach will need similar if his team is to keep the defensive door shut in Belgrade
Ahead of the match, the Tottenham manager has explained why his loyalties lie with Scotland tonight and his former colleague.
“Matic is not in the Serbian national team anymore so my emotional connection with them is gone with Nemanja,” said Mourinho (Sky Sports).
“In Scotland there’s Steve, there’s Scott McTominay. I’ve got a good connection with Scotland too, I spent amazing times there when I studied there.
“So of course I wish them well. Steve was a good, loyal assistant that I had and then his career went in another direction. Now being the national coach of his beloved country for sure means a lot for him.
“But many times in football soul, or state of mind, makes the difference. And the Scottish guys probably are up to it.”