Muslim leader blasts Mourinho over comment on Ramadan


ROME: A Muslim leader in Italy on Tuesday criticised Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho (pic) for comments the Portuguese made about Ramadan at the weekend.

Muslims around the world are fasting during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, during which faithful followers abstain from eating or drinking during daylight hours.

One of those followers is Inter’s Ghana midfielder Muntari Sulley, who Mourinho hauled off after just half an hour of Sunday’s 1-1 home draw against Bari due to the former Portsmouth man’s poor performance.

Afterwards, Mourinho suggested Sulley had played badly due to a lack of energy associated with his fast.

But Mohamed Nour Dachan, president of the Union of Islamic communities and organisations in Italy (UCOII), claimed the coach has got it wrong.

“I think Mourinho could do with talking a little less,” he told SKY TV.

“A practising (Muslim) player is not weakened because we know from the Institute of Sports Medicine that mental and psychological stability can give a sportsman an extra edge on the field.

“A player who is a believing Christian, Jew or Muslim is certainly calmer pyschologically and that improves his performance.”

That is an opinion that Mourinho did not share on Sunday and he was clearly irked with his player after the match.

“Muntari had some problems related to Ramadan, perhaps with this heat it’s not good for him to be doing this (fasting),” said Mourinho.

“Ramadan has not arrived at the ideal moment for a player to play a football match.” — AFP

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