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Special One: City can forget about going any further

Real Madrid's Jose Mourinho, twisted the knife into Roberto Mancini, twice declaring that Manchester City can forget the idea of progressing from the Champions League group stage, even if they win their last two games.

During a press conference, in which he refused to discuss his future at Real Madrid and purposely tilted a skirt at any English clubs who might seek him out, the self-proclaimed Special One said City's Champions League campaign is over, after a failure which he could not easily explain.

"I think it is normal if a big team doesn't win the competition because there are other teams with the same power, desire and responsibility and only one can win," Mourinho stated.

"I don't think that it is normal when you are out of the competition at a very early stage. If Real Madrid win a final, semi or quarter, that's football. When it's an early stage, it's less easy to explain and understand.

"This season they (City) will be out. I think they can win tomorrow and at (Borussia) Dortmund – why not? But eight points is not enough and I think they will be out for a second successive time and that must be difficult for them."

Tonight, Mourinho will become the youngest coach to clock up 100 Champions League matches and only the fourth centurion, along with Arsene Wenger, Ottmar Hitzfeld and Alex Ferguson.

But he arrived in Manchester under the latest cloud of negativity from Spain and his more effusive responses for English journalists, set against clipped responses to the Spaniards, said everything about where he wants to be. "I never hide my feelings even if it makes some people not so happy.

"I've always said how much I like my time here and I always like to be back. In England you have difficult matches, difficult opponents and a difficult atmosphere – because the crowd is always behind the team. But I like that." (© Independent News Service)

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