One of the great aspects of Premier League football is the fact that the battles are not just on the pitch – such is the high-profile nature of the managers in the clubs, that there is always a rivalry or two to watch out for. One of those will be on display in the early kickoff on Saturday, when Manchester United host the champions Leicester City.
Jose Mourinho and Claudio Ranieri, the current managers of Manchester United and Leicester City respectively, have had a fair few run-ins in the past, with the Portuguese, like he usually is, being the aggressor.
Mourinho called Ranieri a "loser" when he took over from the Italian at Chelsea back in 2004, while the former Real Madrid manager also questioned the his counterpart's desire to win during their time in Italy. Mourinho even derided Ranieri's grasp of the English language at one point.
The two were quite cordial when they met in the Premier League last season, when Mourinho was the Chelsea manager, and as far as Ranieri is concerned the rivalry and ill-feeling between the two is well in the past.
"It's prehistoric," Ranieri told reporters on Thursday. "It was a long time ago. (The relationship) is normal [now]. He is a great manager, intelligent and a fantastic person.
"Do you remember in the summer when we had the Soccer Aid? I managed the Rest of the World team against Jose's English side."
Mourinho actually stepped down from managing the side in the end, on matchday, but the pair were seen embracing each other during a training session. Clearly the ill-feeling has been put to the back burner – it will never really, completely go when it comes to Mourinho, will it -- but when it comes to the match on Saturday, Mourinho will have a point to prove. Not just to get Manchester United back on course, after two consecutive defeats in the Premier League, but from a personal perspective as well.
It was the loss to Leicester City in December last year that proved to be the final straw for the Chelsea hierarchy, leading to the Portuguese's dismissal.
While Mourinho could end up losing his cool again, especially if the result and refereeing decisions don't go Manchester United's way, as far as Ranieri is concerned, he is looking forward to having a nice drink with his fellow manager come the end of the 90 minutes.
"I love red wine, and if he offers I will go and drink it with him," Ranieri added.