The coach is tanned, rested, refreshed and raring to go following the break, and he is already causing controversy...It's a new season for Jose Mourinho, but he is back to his old habits as he takes a swipe at Milan, Juventus, European big spenders Real Madrid, as well as new Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti. He also bizarrely labelled a couple of questions from a journalist as 'gay'.
Mourinho gave a 360 degree press conference at Appiano Gentile during his first day back at work as pre-season begins for the Serie A champions. Those who were there could be forgiven for feeling a sense of deja-vu as the coach resumes his verbal challenges.
"Real Madrid? I have nothing special to say on Real Madrid. We might not even play them this season. I am not scared of them. They are a world club with great players and they will be under the spotlight, but I have nothing to say," Mourinho told Sky Sport Italia
"I am not scared of Italian teams either. What they have been doing is normal. Everyone wants to get better and that's obvious (referring to recent spending by Juventus)."
Mourinho continued to give his usual smart answers as he tried to out-wit the press who fired questions hand over fist, but the coach was quick to press the buzzer with his responses which, at times, caused controversy.
"Your question sounds gay to me," said Mourinho when he was twice asked to give a clue about the type of defender he was looking for.
"You say blonde, brown, fair," as he continued to joke with the media.
He then spoke of objectives and of his plans to push through his squad-chop plans.
"I always have the same objectives. I am satisfied to return. I like working, playing, coaching. I like the competition," added the coach.
"We are to start work straight away for next week's friendlies. I am happy and satisfied.
"The squad size? It's a problem for me. I am not happy. Its not good for working. It's XI against XI in a match and having 30 players in training is not positive.
"The players who I want to go know I don't want them to stay. It's not good for the team. It's negative.
"Today it seems players are interested in money and lifestyle rather than anything else. Some players prefer to stay in a team where the coach doesn't want him, rather than find another team.
"[Luis] Jimenez made the move to West Ham and it's good for him. Other players dont want to leave and I have to respect the law and contracts.
"My ideas won't change about certain players. I won't change my mind about them."
The 'Special One' then gave his views on the transfer market, preferring to stick to his no-comment style.
"Nedved? I am not speaking about any players who are not here," he added
"It's always the same story. The market is open until the end of the summer. We will see if other clubs are interested in our players.
"Are Inter complete? We play with 11 players. We are complete, but there are different ways of seeing things. We want eight players to leave the team and four players to arrive so the team grows in the direction myself and the club wants to grow."
Mourinho then went on to bemoan the pre and post-match analysis in Italy, saying he preferred England. "It's easier to coach in England because people think about football for 90 minutes. In Italy there are 60 million coaches in the country."
To complete the press conference, Mourinho was asked about former Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti, and whether he will do well after taking over at Chelsea. The Special One's response was raw, and certain to spark a war of words with Ancelotti, whom he did not enjoy a good relationship with last season.
"Ancelotti is not my friend," Mourinho sniped.
Salvatore Landolina, Goal.com