Jose Mourinho Discusses Hiding in Laundry Basket as Chelsea Manager to Avoid Ban

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIJanuary 20, 2019

Manchester, UNITED KINGDOM:  Chelsea's Manager Jose Mourinho arrives on the pitch before the game against Manchester United in the Premiership football match at Old Trafford in Manchester 06 November 2005. Manchester United won the game 1-0.  AFP PHOTO ADRIAN DENNIS Mobile and website uses of domestic English football pictures subject to subscription of a license with Football Association Premier League (FAPL) tel : +44 207 298 1656. For newspapers where the football content of the printed and electronic versions are identical, no licence is necessary.  (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
ADRIAN DENNIS/Getty Images

Jose Mourinho has spoken about when he avoided a touchline ban in the UEFA Champions League as manager of Chelsea by hiding in a laundry basket.

The 55-year-old told beIN Sports (h/t Sky Sports) how he managed to get around his suspension before the Blues' quarter-final against Bayern Munich in 2005 at Stamford Bridge.

"I go to the dressing room during the day so I was there from midday and the game is seven o'clock. I just want to be in the dressing room when the players arrive.

"I went there and nobody saw me. The problem was to leave after. And Stewart Bannister the kit man put me in the basket. It was a little bit open so I could breathe.

"But when he is taking it outside the dressing room, the UEFA guys were following and desperate to find me so he closed the box and I couldn't breathe! When he opened the box I was dying! I am serious! I was claustrophobic, I promise! It's true!"

Mourinho had been handed a two-game touchline ban by UEFA after he claimed Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard has gone into referee Andres Frisk's dressing room at half-time of Chelsea's 2-1 defeat to the Catalan giants in the first leg of their last-16 clash.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 23:  Chelsea Manager, Jose Mourinho shouts instructions from the bench during the UEFA Champions League first knock-out round, first leg match between Chelsea and Barcelona at Nou Camp, on February 23, 2005 in Barcelona, Spain.
Ben Radford/Getty Images

The ban meant Mourinho was able to watch the matches from the stands but not contact his players.

"He is not allowed in the dressing room, tunnel or technical area before and during the match. Nor is he allowed to get in contact with his players," said a UEFA spokesperson, per the Guardian's Rob Smyth.

Chelsea went on to win the match at Stamford Bridge 4-2 and progressed to the semi-finals 6-5 on aggregate.

Mourinho's side were knocked out of the tournament in the last four by Premier League rivals Liverpool, courtesy of a controversial goal by Luis Garcia that Chelsea claimed did not cross the line.

The Portuguese guided Chelsea to three Premier League titles, the FA Cup and a trio of League Cups in his two spells with the Blues but never managed to land the Champions League in his time in west London.

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