World Football

The Week in Quotes

(FIFA.com)
Manchester United v BSC Young Boys - UEFA Champions League Group H
© Getty Images

"Let me send a message to my lovers and let me say that I've played Champions League for 14 years and I've qualified 14 times. The two years, where I didn't play in the Champions League, I won the Europa League twice. So in 16 years, 14 times I qualified and twice I played Europa League and I won. So just curiosity for my lovers and the lovers of the stats."
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho speaking at a press conference after his side’s victory over BSC Young Boys in the UEFA Champions League

"I drew my boss once at Secret Santa, and it was Rafa Benitez! He started changing his image a little bit, and he started wearing a leather jacket. So, I got him a new leather and I also got him Jose Mourinho's book, and it was 'Jose Mourinho: How to win the league'. I thought 'this is not going to go down well!' And he had a look at it. He opened it up and he just said 'oh!' He was actually genuinely interested. 'I'll read that yeah!'"
Peter Crouch reveals on 'That Peter Crouch Podcast' the funny Secret Santa present he gave then-boss Rafa Benitez when at Liverpool

"We knew that we had accomplished what we wanted to do and that's going to the World Cup. This is not about this team only. This is about all of South Africa. This is about all the coaches there before. About all the players who have been there before. It is also about the Football Association. We wouldn't have been anywhere if they weren't on board. They have been tremendous in the preparations we have had over a year. They made sure we made the best preparations possible."
South Africa coach Desiree Ellis speaking to the media after Banyana Banyana reached their maiden FIFA Women’s World Cup

Chelsea’s Eden Hazard tries his hand at commentating, picking up the mic on one his goals

"There was just too much going on. If you score five goals at home, you should win the game. But if you score five goals away from home, you should win the game, so what can you say?"
Aston Villa manager Dean Smith speaking at a post-match press conference after his side’s staggering 5-5 draw with Nottingham Forest in the English Championship

"Both teams played well and sold a good game out to Africa and the rest of the world. The penalty shoot-out was one that we have been practicing at training for some time now, and today, the players executed it to perfection."
Nigeria head coach Thomas Dennerby speaking to the media after the Super Falcons reached the FIFA Women’s World Cup after a shoot-out victory against Cameroon

"I don't have any regrets because I want to write the story of the future of Senegal football and I hope I'll be able to do that. For me [the World Cup] was a good experience because I wanted to show that Senegal is one of the best teams in Africa. I spoke about the decision with my wife and I chose to go with Senegal. When I saw the light in the eyes of my parents when I told them I had chosen Senegal, I was really happy and comfortable with my choice."
Napoli's France-born defender Kalidou Koulibaly on opting to play for Senegal in an interview with BBC Sport

"Macclesfield fans will probably say 'what's going on here?'. You've got an international footballer who has been one of the best footballers in the world coming to your club, I think there's a nice mutual balance there."
Former England defender Sol Campbell speaking at a press conference after being announced as the new manager of English League Two side Macclesfield Town

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling discusses being a footballer on a vegan diet with BBC Sport

"This is a wonderful time for football in our country. I hope these girls have lit the touchpaper for a whole movement and have encouraged the next generation to go out and play this sport. That, to my mind, is the biggest victory of all."
New Zealand U-17 Women’s head coach Leon Birnie reflects on his side’s historic Uruguay 2018 campaign, where they reached the final four, in conversation with FIFA.com

"I could go and manage Gainsborough Trinity next week, or even back in a Sunday league again, and it wouldn't worry me. A lot of managers feel like they couldn't drop down, but it isn't beneath me. Managers like me might be going out of fashion, but I just enjoy management and making people better."
Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock, who celebrates his 70th birthday today, in conversation with BBC Sport

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