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Last Updated: Friday, 2 July, 2004, 15:18 GMT 16:18 UK
Maniche snubs Premiership
By Phil McNulty
Our man in Portugal

Portugal midfielder Maniche
Portugal midfield dynamo Maniche has ruled out a move to the Premiership despite emerging as one of the stars of Euro 2004.

Maniche has helped Portugal to the tournament's final and was a key figure in Porto's Champions League win under new Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho.

But he is unlikely to follow him to Stamford Bridge, telling BBC Sport: "He is a great coach. "He knows me very well but he has his life now and I have mine."

Maniche has also been linked with a move to Italy, but he said: "I don't want to speak about my future with two years left on my contract."

He insisted there will be no element of revenge when Portugal face Greece in Sunday's final in Lisbon's Stadium of Light.

Greece beat hosts Portugal in the opening game, and will now try to repeat the feat in the closing fixture.

He is a very strong-minded person who is very keen on his own ideas
Maniche on Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari

But Maniche said: "There is no question of the word revenge being used because the Portuguese are friendly people and we are a friendly country.

"Obviously this is the decisive match. I don't think we are favourites, and certainly not just because we will have more fans in the ground.

"England had more fans in the stadium than us in the quarter-final and we won, so it doesn't matter."

Maniche revealed some of the secrets behind the success of Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari, who has guided them to the Euro 2004 final after winning the World Cup with Brazil.

He said: "We respect him a lot and his work and results speak for themselves. He is a very strong-minded person who is very keen on his own ideas."

Maniche also respects veteran Greece coach Otto Rehhagel, who has guided the rank outsiders to the final.

"If you think that Greece is not one of the big countries and he has brought them to the final, then you can see he has done a wonderful job and is a wonderful coach."

Maniche insists Portugal have no worries about having German referee Markus Merk taking charge of a game involving a fellow countryman in Greece coach Rehhagel.

He said: "We have to do our own job and not think about the referee. We are not concerned about that."

Links to more Portugal stories



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