Jose Mourinho has defended Manchester United centre-back Marcos Rojo, insisting today that two-footed tackles are a term of endearment in Argentina.
The former Sporting Lisbon man has been the subject of scrutiny in recent weeks after committing two dangerous two-footed challenges in his last three league matches, with many observers calling for harsher punishment from referees.
Speaking to media this morning however, his manager was adamant that not only is Rojo a calm and wonderful person at odds with the media portrayal of him, but that diving towards a player’s ankles with both sets of studs showing is actually more akin to a hug in South America than any violent act.
“People are saying a lot about Marcos but he’s not an aggressive person. In fact, he greets his mother and grandmother with two-footed tackles whenever he sees them, and lunges his way through the front door when he gets home to his family every night. Any offence taken from such an act is purely a blind ignorance to a profoundly different culture,” said Mourinho, adding that his own introduction to Rojo led to him having to have three stitches on his shin.
“It’s difficult for the English public to understand but South America – and especially Argentina – is a very different place where people show their love by gouging each other in the eyes and elbowing their brothers and sisters in the neck.”
At press time, Mourinho also defended Marouane Fellaini when he claimed that being detrimental to your side’s chances of success is a term of endearment in Belgium.