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Jose: Schalke tie is not about me and Di Matteo

Jose Mourinho insists Chelsea versus Schalke tomorrow night should not be billed as a clash between him and his opposite number Roberto Di Matteo.

The Portuguese, now in his second spell at Stamford Bridge, is a firm fans' favourite in west London, despite having been unable to secure the European crown he won at Porto and Inter Milan.

It is a competition the Blues look well placed to challenge for this season, with progress to the knock-out stages guaranteed should they win at Schalke - a club managed by a familiar face.

Di Matteo oversaw Chelsea's miraculous Champions League triumph in 2012 and, having last month taken his first job since his Stamford Bridge sacking, now stands in the way of his former club as they attempt to secure top spot in Group G.

Like Mourinho, the Italian will go down in Chelsea folklore but the current incumbent is not interested in any talk of an individual battle tomorrow. "I don't play against him," the Portuguese said of the Schalke boss, who also shone for Chelsea as a player.

"If I play against him, he wins because he plays better than me.

"Unless I am fitter, which I don't know, but normally he wins because he is much better than me.

"It is Chelsea against Schalke, it is not me against Di Matteo."

Chelsea head into the match three points clear at the top of Group G, yet it has been a topsy-turvy campaign having drawn at home to Schalke and away at Maribor last time out. "The group is easy to analyse," Mourinho said. "Any one of us can finish first, second or third."

Diego Costa and Eden Hazard goals secured a win far more comfortable than the 2-0 scoreline suggests, with the Baggies forced into damage limitation mode following Claudio Yacob's red card just before the half-hour mark.


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