Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho believes he does not get the respect he deserves from some of his fellow managers in England.
Mourinho says it is unfair to question why foreign managers such as he and Arsene Wenger get some of the biggest jobs in the Premier League.
“I often read – and it makes me laugh a lot – managers saying, ‘why are they there and not me?'” Mourinho says in an interview with BBC Radio Five Live.
“I think it’s a lack of respect. People have to respect what we did before.”
“Why did Wenger arrive at Arsenal? Because he had great results before.
“Why did Mourinho arrive at Chelsea? Because he had great results.
“I learn to live with this situation. I think it’s more important what I think about myself, my self-image, my self-confidence… than what people think.”
Mourinho famously described himself as “the special one” in his first news conference after joining Chelsea from Porto and he says he chose the phrase deliberately.
He says: “If I had come to my first press conference in England and people had treated me like a European champion – which I had become two or three days before – I wouldn’t have needed to say such a strong couple of words.
“I needed to show people I’m different, I’m not afraid, I’m confident, I can say things with a big percentage of risk.
“It still happens a bit, when people say I do it for the money. It’s because people don’t know where I come from.”
Mourinho says he is very happy at Chelsea in the interview, which is part of a Five Live Chelsea Night to mark the club’s centenary season.
“One and a half years on, I’m very happy – I couldn’t be happier with the move,” he says.
“I love the club, I love the players, everything around me. I like to live in this country with my family.
“At this moment I’m not thinking about the next move because I’m really happy within Chelsea Football Club.”
Mourinho insists England is the best country for footballers and managers to work in.
“The English football fan is the best in the world,” he says.
“A few things happen that could only happen in England – big applause for an opposing team, a cup match between a top team and an amateur team when you get a full crowd, a player diving for a penalty and being booed by his own players.
“It’s the best place for a professional to work.”
Mourinho also has kind words for two of his biggest managerial rivals.
He says Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is “the best results manager in the history of English football and a person I like very, very much.
“We can laugh before a game, after the game, in spite of the result and we respect each other during the game,” he adds.
And Mourinho says both he and Arsene Wenger are to blame for their much-publicised spats.
The Portuguese manager described his Arsenal counterpart as “a voyeur” in October when accusing him of taking too much interest in Chelsea.
Wenger countered by threatening to sue Mourinho, although he subsequently decided against doing so.
Mourinho says: “He is guilty, I am guilty. In the end we respect each other.
“I think he’s one of the best managers in the game and I hope in the future we don’t have problems.
“But if we do, we must keep personal respect.”