Former Inter defender Marco Materazzi has revealed that he was devastated when Jose Mourinho left the San Siro and was replaced by Rafa Benitez.
Real Madrid coach Mourinho left Italy in 2010 after guiding the Nerazzurri to an unprecedented treble and Materazzi has admitted he was saddened when the Portuguese told him that he would be departing.
"Mourinho was number one. His secret was to make the players feel involved in the project," he explained on television program Undici. "In Madrid [during the 2010 Champions League final], he told me that he was leaving. I said to him: 'Damn you for leaving me with Benítez.'"
Materazzi was videoed in an emotional embrace with Mourinho after the former Chelsea boss left the club, and the defender has admitted that Benitez did not take kindly to the former Perugia man having photos of his former trainers on his locker.
"I did not get on well with Benitez. He made me remove pictures of the most important moments of my career with Mourinho and [Marcello] Lippi from my locker," he said. "He thought he knew everything, but he was afraid of his own shadow."
Materazzi was also asked to pick the best 11 players he has played with and against, and the inclusion of Zinedine Zidane raised a number of eyebrows after the pair's famous altercation in the 2006 World Cup final which saw the Frenchman sent off.
"Julio Cesar, Maicon, [Fabio] Cannavaro, Materazzi and [Christian]Chivu in defense," Materazzi explained. "[Gennaro] Gattuso, [Dejan] Stankovic and [Daniele] De Rossi in midfield, with [Antonio] Cassano, Zidane and [Samuel] Eto'o up front.
"Why Zidane? He has a place in my heart. He made me win a World Cup."
- Sports & Recreation
- Marco Materazzi
- Rafa Benitez
- Zinedine Zidane