Monday Kickoff: Mourinho happy to return to Chelsea; Dortmund rule out Lewandowski Bayern move; and more

Monday Kickoff: Mourinho happy to return to Chelsea; Dortmund rule out Lewandowski Bayern move; and more

South American Soccer

Monday Kickoff: Mourinho happy to return to Chelsea; Dortmund rule out Lewandowski Bayern move; and more

MourinhoChelsea2013 (ChelseaFC)

By DAN KARELL

For the first time in six years, Jose Mourinho met with the assembled media as manager of Chelsea Football Club.

The former Real Madrid, Inter, and Porto boss admitted that he was happy to be returning to the club, and signed a four-year contract with the club, potentially keeping Mourinho around Stamford Bridge through 2018.

“I am a very happy person,” Mourinho said in his press conference. “It’s the first time I arrived in a club where I already love the club. I am more than happy to be back, very calm and very relaxed.”

Mourinho answered numerous questions during the hour long press conference, including clearing up issues such as his controversial exit at Chelsea in 2007 and how he decided he wanted to return to London this summer.

“I keep hearing I was sacked [in 2007]. That was not true,” Mourinho said. “It was a mutual agreement at that time.

“I decided I was going to leave my previous club, that was the trigger. After that, it was a question of analyzing possibilities and making the best decision for my happiness. When Chelsea came, the decision was made.

Here are some more stories to get your week kicked off:

DORTMUND PUT KABOSH ON LEWANDOWSKI BAYERN MOVE

Borussia Dortmund don’t know yet whether star forward Robert Lewandowski will be with the team next season, but they know at least one thing. He won’t be going to Bayern Munich.

The club’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke made clear statements on Sunday that Bayern Munich had passed their deadline to sign Lewandowski and he now has no shot at moving to the German triple winners, according to reports in Germany.

“Robert Lewandowski will definitely not transfer to Bayern Munich in 2013,” Watzke told German publication Bild. “This is final. We have informed Robert and his advisers. The Bayern case is closed because there was no written offer.”

Lewandowski’s representatives had dropped hints in the past weeks about a move south from Dortmund and that they already had an agreement with a club, but Watzke’s comments have likely put an end to any movement to Bavaria this summer.

The Poland international was one of the best strikers in the world this season, helping guide Dortmund to the Champions League final thanks to 36 goals in all competitions, including ten in Europe and 24 in the Bundesliga.

VILLARREAL RETURNS TO LA LIGA AFTER ONE YEAR

One of the shocks of the 2011-2012 La Liga season was that it ended with Villarreal, who began the season in the Champions League qualification round, relegated, due to poor management and a high number of injuries.

But on Sunday, the Yellow Submarine made their triumphant return to the Primera Division, finishing in second place in the Spain’s second tier after a 1-0 victory over now third-placed Almeria.

Manager Marcelino Garcia Toral took over the side in January, and has helped lead them to a promotion place in the league, helping stabilize the rocking ship that was the club. Since 2009, Villarreal have appointed six managers, including Manolo Preciado, who suffered a heart attack and passed away in his first day on the job last summer.

BRAZIL DEFEATS FRANCE FOR FIRST TIME IN 21 YEARS

In their final warmup match ahead of the Confederations Cup, Brazil took down France, 3-0, in Porto Alegre on Sunday.

All three goals were scored by European-based players in the Brazil squad. Chelsea starlet Oscar scored the first in the 54th minute, followed by a goal from Lazio’s Hernanes in the 85th minute, and a stoppage-time penalty kick by Paris Saint-Germain’s Lucas to close out the match.

Brazil begins their Confederations Cup campaign on June 15 against Japan in Brasilia. The match will be the Selecao’s first competitive matches since the Copa America in 2011.

QUICK KICKS

Hungarian international goalkeeper Marton Fulop is currently recovering after doctors removed a tumor in his arm. (REPORT)

John Obi Mikel will be forced to lead a young Nigeria squad at the Confederations Cup as manager Stephen Keshi has picked his 22-man team. (REPORT)

FC Porto have replaced manager Vitor Pereira, who led them to two undefeated league seasons and titles in a row, with Pacos de Ferreira head coach Paulo Fonseca. (REPORT)

England have been knocked out of the European Under-21 Championships after a stunning 3-1 defeat to Norway. (REPORT)

Holland have booked a place in the semi-finals of the Under-21 tournament in Israel with a 5-1 thrashing over Russia. (REPORT)

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What do you make of these reports? Do you think Mourinho can re-discover his old success? Glad to have the Special One back in the Premier League? Where do you see Lewandowski going this summer?

Share your thoughts below.

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