Arsenal have already learned Jose Mourinho’s thoughts about £40m Riccardo Calafiori transfer

By Staff

Arsenal are reportedly setting their sights on Euro 2024 standout Riccardo Calafiori, who has previously impressed ex-Premier League manager Jose Mourinho during his time at AS Roma.

Mourinho – the former Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham manager – took the reins at Roma after a premature exit from his north London tenure and clinched the UEFA Conference League title two years ago.

Calafiori – once under Mourinho’s tutelage at Roma – found himself out of the spotlight and was transferred to Basel in Switzerland in 2022, reports the Mirror.

Despite this, both Mourinho and Roma are said to have held the left-back in high esteem, a sentiment that persists amidst Arsenal’s interest – with Liverpool also keeping tabs on him.

The £40million-rated defender has acknowledged his enduring rapport with Mourinho, recalling how the Portuguese tactician scouted him upon his arrival at Roma.

In an interview with Sportweek, Calafiori reflected: “Mourinho? With him, I also started quite well. Then there was the match against Bodo, in which we lost 6-1. From there, things went downhill. He sent me to the bench and decided to rely on others, but my need and desire were to play.”

READ MORE: Jose Mourinho ‘gets final say’ on Arsenal deal as Edu weighs up £40m transfer

READ MORE: Jose Mourinho already facing transfer problem in new job as key player ‘agrees terms’ with Arsenal

He added, revealing the nature of their relationship: “It was his choice, of course, but I’ll also tell you something. Mou and I talk; he wrote me several messages, and there’s a nice relationship between us.”

Bologna’s bargain buy, Riccardo Calafiori, who cost a mere £4million last summer, played a crucial role under Thiago Motta in achieving an unexpected Champions League spot.

Roma, with a hefty 40% sell-on clause for the Italian left-back, are poised to profit from any lucrative transfer to the Premier League.

Calafiori recently expressed his gratitude towards Jose Mourinho for shaping him as a player, saying: “Mourinho forged my character and personality, while with Thiago Motta, I tried things that tactically I had never seen.”

He also praised the defensive training at Bologna, attributing their on-pitch cohesion to Motta’s rigorous demands: “At Bologna, we train defensive solidity, and it shows in the game: it is the sign of a united team. Motta has in common with Mourinho the fact that he asks you for 200% in every training session and that he makes his choices by looking at what you give on the pitch.”

Given Mourinho’s apparent regret over letting Calafiori go, it’s evident he holds the defender in high regard, suggesting he’d support a move to Arsenal or another top-tier English club should the opportunity arise this summer.

Sign up to our Arsenal WhatsApp community and get all the latest breaking news and in-depth stories from’s dedicated Arsenal writers straight to your phone!

By signing up to this free service you will be the first to know the news from the Emirates Stadium as it happens.

To join our Arsenal community, all you have to do is click this link and you can join!

If you’re curious, you can check out our privacy policy here.

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *