Jose Mourinho has expertly detailed one of his finest hours in football management.
He’s a master tactician who has intricate and precise methods, and there’s no better example of his brilliance than the tie against Barcelona in 2010.
Mourinho’s Inter Milan faced the mighty Barcelona for a spot in the Champions League final.
The first leg took place at San Siro and his side secured an impressive result, beating the holders 3-1 thanks to goals from Maicon, Wesley Sneijder and Diego Milito.
And he’s explained how Inter beat Barcelona in a fascinating video.
Mourinho employed a diamond in midfield to limit space for Barcelona. His central midfielders were in constant communication with the left-back in order to stop the threat of Lionel Messi, who operates between the lines. He created a “jail” to nullify the Argentine.
The Portuguese manager praised the “mentally strong” Thiago Motta and Esteban Cambiasso for their roles in containing Barcelona’s feared attack.
Mourinho continued by explaining how his team hurt Barcelona. He exploited their attack-minded full-backs with the pace of Maicon and Samuel Eto’o, while identifying Barcelona’s Maxwell as a weak link.
He knew the Brazilian was not so strong in a defensive recovery situation with the “phenomenal” Maicon taking full advantage.
The speedy Eto’o was also pivotal in attacking spaces not to mention Pandev and Sneijder, who both arrived in the attacking third during transitions from defence to attack, a tactic Mourinho believes Barcelona couldn’t cope with.
Inter Milan eventually reached the final after a 3-2 aggregate victory over Barcelona and beat Bayern Munich in another masterclass to become champions of Europe in 2010.