The Premier League has kicked off once again and Manchester’s teams look to be back to their best, with the pair currently sharing top spot alongside Chelsea. This is surely at least in part due to a couple of superstar managers, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho, who’ve been brought in to deliver trophies to their respective clubs but also bring with them a fair amount of hype and glamour. It’s set to be an intriguing year as there was certainly no love lost between the two men during their time in Spain, and they are set to renew their rivalries in the first derby of the season this weekend at Old Trafford.
But, more importantly, where are we likely to spot these two blokes out and about? They’ve wasted no time hitting up the usual famous footballer haunts, having already been photographed dining out in the city, Jose at celeb-spotters favourite San Carlo and Pep at footballers hang out Wings. As managers the two are both famous for going their own way though, so I’d like to think as they find their feet in our fair city they’ll head to some more off the beaten track places, so we take look at where they might end up.
A bite to eat
Spanish food is enjoying a real renaissance in Manchester with more good tapas restaurants than ever, so Pep Guardiola really is spoilt for choice if he wants some food from his homeland. Should he ask compatriot David Silva for a tip though he could find himself at La Bandera, as the City star is known to have enjoyed a meal there. The Deansgate restaurant offers authentic Spanish cooking with a twist of Tenerife, as owner Yashin Dadashnejad hails form the Canary islands.
Unfortunately Mourinho isn’t going to be quite so lucky when it comes to finding Portuguese food, unless you count Nando’s, so maybe he’ll have to settle for proving his red credentials by dining out at Rosso, part owned by ex-player Rio Ferdinand. Current midfielder Juan Mata is thought to have some involvement in Tapeo and Wine, although given the pair shared a rather stormy relationship at Chelsea perhaps that’s one place we won’t spot Jose.
A quick drink
I’d say the most United friendly pub in the world has to The Bishop Blaize in Old Trafford. It’s situated right outside the stadium and is where many of the clubs most famous chants have been perfected pre-match. However, it’s a bit more Special Brew than Special One if you know what I mean, so I’m not sure we’ll see Mr Mourinho drinking in there any time soon. Perhaps he’d be more likely to enjoy one of Cantona’s old favourites the Peveril of the Peak, rumour has it Eric used to enjoy a pint in the characteristic, green tiled boozer.
With his suave style and sharp suits, Pep seems to be a man of good taste so I imagine he might head to El Gato Negro for a swift loosener. It’s probably still the hottest ticket in town having enjoyed an extremely successful first 6 months trading, there’s the sun terrace, great cocktails not to mention their fantastic tapas menu to enjoy.
Something for the weekend
During his sabbatical year between Barcelona and Bayern Munich, Guardiola is known to have spent time enjoying the art scene of New York. He’s lucky then to find himself in Manchester with our regularly world class exhibitions, Manchester Art Gallery on Mosley street has featured some superb artists of late and the brilliant £15m redevelopment of Whitworth Art Gallery was completed just last year.
Rumour has it Mourinho has music tastes that can probably come under the category ‘guilty pleasure’ or to be more specific – Banarama. Apparently he has ‘impressed’ United officials by turning up to training sessions with the girl group blasting out of his car stereo. So with a penchant for 80s cheese I reckon a night out on Canal Street is definitely on the cards, and with his famous dress sense and good looks I imagine the silver fox might be quite popular with the locals there too.