Jose Mourinho was “enchanted” by Liverpool and made attempts to become their manager in 2004, according to a report.
After winning the Champions League with Porto, Mourinho was appointed Chelsea boss by Roman Abramovich in the summer of 2004.
However, according to Tony Barrett’s report on joe.co.uk, Mourinho sent his agent at the time, Jorge Baideck, to Anfield on the day Porto famously knocked Manchester United out of Europe.
The day previous, Baideck had met with Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier to discuss potential transfers, but returned on March 9 to meet with Reds chief executive Rick Parry.
The report states:
“A full charm offensive ensured. Mourinho was a huge admirer of Liverpool and was enchanted by the idea of working at Anfield, a venue that he had long revered. Club and manager would be the perfect fit, Baideck continued. Not only was his client interested, he was so keen that he had identified Liverpool has his ideal destination once his departure from Porto was confirmed. The seriousness of the approach was clear. Liverpool were in the enviable position of having one of football management’s rising stars telling them that they were the ones he wanted.
“The problem was – and this was a significant one for a club which prided itself on doing things the right way and following their own procedures – Liverpool already had a manager in place and it was the same one whom Baideck had met with hours earlier. In terms of professional etiquette and common decency, there was something about Baideck’s brazen attempt to see his own client oust Houllier just hours after trying to sell players to the Frenchman which did not sit well with the Anfield hierarchy.”
At that point Houllier was under pressure with Liverpool sixth in the league but the club had taken no decision to replace the Frenchman.
Club chiefs were wary of derailing Houllier’s attempts to guide Liverpool into the top four, and were subsequently put off by Mourinho’s touchline antics at Old Trafford.
This allowed Chelsea to make an offer to Mourinho via Jorge Mendes, who then became the current Manchester United manager’s agent.