What Jose Mourinho said to convince Tammy Abraham to snub Arsenal when quitting Chelsea
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Tammy Abraham has come clean on the Jose Mourinho pitch which led him to choose Roma over Arsenal in the summer. The striker has made a strong start to life out in Italy, earning himself a recall to the England squad after a troubling period under Thomas Tuchel which saw him rooted to the bench at Stamford Bridge.
The 24-year-old fell out of favour under Tuchel last campaign, despite impressing under his predecessor Frank Lampard.
Timo Werner was favoured up top, and when Romelu Lukaku was signed during the summer it became clear that Abraham had no immediate future at Chelsea.
Arsenal reportedly showed an interest in bringing him to the Emirates, and despite being a boyhood Gunner he opted to join up with Mourinho in Rome.
So far, his move has proven fruitful having netted two goals and notched two assists in seven outings.
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“I picked up the phone and the first thing [Mourinho] said was: ‘Do you want to enjoy some sun or stay in the rain?’,” said Abraham.
“I laughed. At first I did not think much of it when we were speaking.
“My mindset was that I wanted to stay in the Premier League. It was home, being around London and England.
“Jose is a brilliant salesman. When he speaks, you listen. He is a good man and has helped me a lot so far and hopefully we can build on it.
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“I have learned so much tactically – as much as I have in my entire lifetime!
“I want to be in the names of the best strikers in the world when they’re ranking the strikers.
“I think after my career I can sit back and look at the things that I’ve done. I want to be able to say I’ve done everything I can, I’ve left it all out there, I’ve worked as hard as I could.”
Indeed, Mourinho has plenty of ammunition to deliver a good sales pitch given the hoard of top-class strikers he has managed during his esteemed managerial career.
Abraham is merely the next in a long line of talent to receive his guidance which includes Didier Drogba, Karim Benzema and Samuel Eto’o.
His move to Italy will give him some time out of the Premier League spotlight where he can work ruthlessly on his game in a new and challenging environment.
Of course, his career in England is unlikely to be over completely. The likes of Demarai Gray and Jadon Sancho have recently had spells abroad before returning to familiar territory.
If Abraham really begins to pull trees up in Serie A, Chelsea supposedly have a £68million buy-back clause which could bring him back to Stamford Bridge.
That is probably the last thing on the striker’s mind at present, however, as he attempts to extend the good impression he is already making at his new side.
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