Shrewsbury v Chelsea: Mellon shaken, not stirred by Mourinho

By Ged ScottBBC Sport
Jose Mourinho and Micky Mellon
"If that team never had a manager they'd probably still win games," says Mellon about Mourinho's Chelsea

Shrewsbury Town boss Micky Mellon will be ready for a handshake from Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho whether it comes before, after or even during Tuesday's League Cup tie at the Greenhous Meadow.

Mourinho has caused the odd upsetexternal-link by shaking hands before the end of a game.

But Mellon said: "He can come and shake my hand as many times as he likes.

"He's looking to come here and beat us, and beat us well, then go off on the way to his next challenge. At the end of the day, he's a fantastic manager."

Admittedly, Shrewsbury are a force to be feared at the Meadow in League Two this season, having conceded just three goals in an unbeaten run of seven wins in eight home matches, as well as putting two Championship sides - Blackpool and Norwich City - out of the League Cup.

They also knocked out Premier League side Leicester City on their way to the fourth round.

Micky Mellon v Jose Mourinho
The Mellon manThe Special One
Scottish. Aged 42.Portuguese. Aged 51.
Made 463 games as a player with Bristol City, WBA, Blackpool, Tranmere Rovers and Burnley.Made almost 100 appearances in the Portuguese Division Two
Managerial achievements: Blue Square North title (2011). Blue Square Bet Premier title (2012) with Fleetwood Town.Two European Cups (Porto and Inter Milan), 7 league titles (Porto 2, Chelsea 2, Inter 2, Real Madrid), UEFA Cup, FA Cup, Coppa Italia, Coppa Del Rey, two League Cups.
May 2014 - Appointed manager of Shrewsbury Town.June 2013 - Returns to Chelsea, a month after leaving Real.

But, ahead of the sell-out League Cup clash with the current Premier League leaders, Mellon knows that, at 10-1 outsiders with most bookmakers, Shrewsbury are understandably unfancied to cause an upset.

He knows, even without injured top scorer Diego Costa, and suspended defender Branislav Ivanovic, there is really no such thing as a weakened Chelsea team.

"Look at all the players they've got," he told BBC Radio Shropshire.

"They have 25 world class players, regardless of who actually plays. That's the size of the challenge.

"They're one of the best clubs in Europe. Top of the league again, always in the shake-up at the end of every season. It doesn't get much better than Chelsea.

"If that team never had a manager they would probably still win games.

Norwich City keeper Declan Rudd fails to keep out Shrewsbury's League Cup third round matchwinner
Norwich keeper Declan Rudd fails to keep out Shrewsbury's League Cup third round match-winner

"You just have to be very prepared. It's different to threats we've had before. All we know is we'll have to be at the top of our game to get anything. But I'll be disappointed if we don't go out there and have a right good go. We've nothing to lose."

By contrast to the near £300m combined price tag of Chelsea's current playing staff, none of Shrewsbury's players cost a penny.

"It would be handy to have a few more quid," added Mellon.

"But we have a different challenge here. When I came, the club was rock bottom. We had only five players, no staff. This is a big part of getting back on our feet.

"I always hoped we'd fill the stadium one day and be involved in games that the Shrewsbury public wanted to come and see. I just didn't think it would happen so quickly."

Shrewsbury Town manager Micky Mellon was speaking to BBC Radio Shropshire sports editor James Bond.

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