ENGLISH football has a special place in the heart of Jose Mourinho, who voiced his desire to return to manage in the Premier League.
"I know that one day I will come back because English football means a lot to myself,'' said the former Chelsea manager.
Mourinho (pictured) guided Real Madrid to the La Liga title last year but has encountered problems this season, including disagreements with senior players such as Iker Casillas, and he is now expected to leave the Bernabeu in the summer. Paris St-Germain may offer a new challenge or Mourinho could consider what is available in the Premier League.
His love affair with English football is well known. He was back in England on Sunday, checking on Real's Champions League opponents, Manchester United, and being surrounded by autograph-hunters.
Mourinho attended a League Managers Association coaching conference at St George's Park. He has also delivered an impassioned tribute to English football in a message of congratulations to the Football Association on its 150th anniversary. "To say congratulations to the English FA is to say congratulations to football,'' said Mourinho. "It's to say congratulations to everybody that loves football around the world.
"For me, the English FA means not just the passion of football in England, but also the passion of football around the world.
"I think they are most responsible for why football is what it is around the world."
Having steered Porto to the 2004 Champions League, Mourinho arrived in England and guided Chelsea to two Premier League titles, two League Cups and an FA Cup.
"My memories from English football could not be better. It was my first experience outside of Portugal - I was still a very young coach when I left Portugal to go to England.
"But there couldn't be a better place to go. In England you feel the real passion for the game. You also don't feel what we feel in almost every other country, which is the passion for clubs. In England, it's not just about passion for clubs, it's mainly about passion for football - and you feel it."