Ahead of Tuesday’s Capital One semi-final clash with Liverpool at Anfield, Coach Jose Mourinho has demanded that Chelsea fans show Steven Gerrard the respect he deserves. Chelsea supporters have taken great delight in taunting the Liverpool captain for last season’s costly slip, which helped Chelsea to a win that stalled the Liverpool’s hopes of ending their long wait for a league crown.
But Mourinho remains a huge admirer of Gerrard, who will leave Liverpool for LA Galaxy in the summer after more than 25 years at Anfield, and would prefer Chelsea supporters did not direct their taunts at the midfielder.
“Gerrard is an historical player for Liverpool, an historical player for the Premier League,” said Mourinho.
“He is an opponent that I always admired and respect. “There is a song that my fans have about him that I don’t like at all. A couple of times it’s good fun, but to go and go and go, especially when a player like him deserves respect – we don’t need that.
“We have so many other songs that we don’t need that one, and I love these quotes when he was saying that in this life he would never score against Liverpool. I love these words.”
Mourinho tried to sign Gerrard during his first stint in charge of Chelsea, and he admits it was one of his dreams to see the former England captain in a blue shirt.
He is an opponent that I always admired and respect
“I understand why he was almost, almost, almost coming to Chelsea and he didn’t and I respect that a lot,” he said.
“I was dreaming of having Claude Makelele, Gerrard and Frank Lampard in midfield.
“We were playing in an open triangle without a No10, we were playing with Claude in front of the defenders and me and Mr Abramovich were dreaming of that.
“We did everything to try. It was almost there. The decision for me was proven right because he will always be a Red forever.”