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John Mikel Obi joined Chelsea in 2006 after Manchester United and Chelsea fought for his signature in what was a very intense transfer move.
Mikel had shone in the FIFA U-20 World Cup and was the tournament’s second best player, behind Lionel Messi.
In his first season at Stamford Bridge, Mikel had disciplinary issues and was sent off two times in matches against Reading and Arsenal.
He has now revealed how Jose Mourinho was displeased with his discipline and advised him to learn from Claude Makélélé, to improve his disciplinary record during his early days at Chelsea, and the Chelsea midfielder was dismissed only twice in his next nine seasons with the Blues.
Mikel said in an interview with 61 Saat: “I saw a red card in my first match after I transferred to Chelsea. After playing a few games, I saw another red card.
“The cards I saw made Jose Mourinho very unhappy and he advised me to follow Makelele to improve my game.
Mikel has hailed Makelele as one of the best defensive midfielders in the world.
He added: “Makelele was an incredible player. His position, was perhaps one of the best in the world. As a young player, you want to intervene on every ball and fly on every ball. I started to change and improve myself when I started to watch Makelele.
“Because my position is perhaps the most important position for the team. Or one of the most important. Every move you make there affects the team completely.”