Jose Mourinho marked his 1,000th game as a manager with a classic Jose Mourinho celebration.
He rolled back the years, sprinting down the touchline to celebrate Stephan El Shaarawy’s injury-time winner for Roma with his players.
Those scenes were reminiscent of the iconic moment when he charged down the Old Trafford touchline as manager of Porto in 2004, after knocking Manchester United out of the Champions League.
That was the year he led the Portuguese side to win the trophy before taking over at Chelsea as the self-proclaimed ‘special one’.
“I wasn’t 58 years old, but 10 or 12 or 14, when you start dreaming about a career in football. Running like I did, I was running like a child,” said Mourinho after the 2-1 win over Sassuolo. “And I apologised to [Sassuolo coach Alessio] Dionisi for that.”
The Portuguese, who joined Roma in May after being sacked by Spurs, explained the goal was so significant because he was “scared” of losing the landmark game.
“During the week I was lying to people, telling everyone this wasn’t a special game – perhaps I was trying to convince myself as well,” he added.
“But actually it was – this game had a really special meaning for me. And I am sure I will remember it for the rest of my life because my 1000th game as a coach was this one.
“I didn’t want to lose it, and I was very scared of having that be my lasting memory of the moment. So I was lying to everyone beforehand. It was a very special feeling.
“Perhaps God decided that I didn’t deserve to have a negative memory of this particular game.”
Mourinho has won a lot of accolades as a manager, including two Champions League trophies, three Premier League titles, three La Liga titles, and two Scudettos, but many felt after he failed at Spurs and Manchester United that his powers were waning.
However, he seems to have his mojo back in the Italian capital and he has now won his first five games as Roma manager – the first time he’s done that with a club.