Belfast Telegraph

Jose Mourinho has dig at Manchester City over Wilfried Bony signing

By Simon Peach

Jose Mourinho has suggested Manchester City play by different rules to Chelsea.

The Financial Fair Play regulations imposed by European governing body UEFA are designed to ensure that clubs spend within their means. City accepted sanctions at the end of last season for breaching the rules, among them a fine and restrictions on the club's Champions League squad.

However, that has not stopped City from this week spending £28m to sign Wilfried Bony from Swansea.

Mourinho congratulated his title rivals for their acquisition, albeit with a less-than-veiled dig at such transfer activity.

"Well done, well done - good player, good striker, if they have the money and can spend it and have no problems with Financial Fair Play, well done," he said ahead of Chelsea's trip to Swansea today.

"I think they can only play with 11, unless the rules for them are different and they can play with 12.

"It looks like the rules are different for them in certain aspects, but not this one. If Bony plays and Dzeko is on the bench, I am happy with that.

"Fantastic squad, one more top player. For that squad to have Aguero, Jovetic, Dzeko and Bony is absolutely magnificent. I repeat, well done."

Asked what other aspects are different for them, Mourinho retorted: "You know what I mean."

The Chelsea manager, when speaking to the media for the first time since being hit by a Football Association misconduct charge, also expressed his belief that referees are being put under excessive pressure.

Last week, the Portuguese was charged for comments made about match officials following the Blues' 1-1 draw at Southampton on December 28.

Mourinho claimed there was a "clear campaign" by "people, pundits, commentators and coaches from other teams" against Chelsea and labelled Cesc Fabregas' booking for diving at St Mary's a "scandal".

Those comments mean the Blues boss is facing possible disciplinary action and led him to withdraw from routine press activity before and after last weekend's match against Newcastle.

"Now I am in conditions to control myself and one week ago I couldn't," Mourinho explained upon resuming his press responsibilities ahead of the Swansea game.

"It would have put myself under bigger problems, so now I can smile and control my words."

Mourinho has appealed the charge handed down to him by the FA, but is not hopeful, or he says interested, about its success.

The Chelsea boss was, though, keen to stress that he has no issues with Premier League officials.

"We're not against the referees," he said. "We understand the job is not an easy one.

"I am happy to admit my mistakes, so when I spoke with Kevin Friend (after the FA Cup game against Watford) and realised that it was my mistake and not his mistake, I was more than happy to apologise, so there are no problems.

"But the reality is that every decision is going against us and the results were affected by that," he added.

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