Galatasaray coach Roberto Mancini, the former City boss, dismissed doubts over the state of English football as he admitted his team remain very much the outsiders in the tie.
"The Premier League is the best championship in the world and Chelsea are one of the best teams," said the Italian, whose own side are on a run of just one defeat in 20 matches.
His displeasure with Galatasaray's start to the game was evident as he changed things tactically half an hour in, replacing winger Izet Hajrovic and introducing an extra central midfielder in Yekta Kurtulus, and that helped them eventually come back into the contest.
"We can't show Chelsea the level of respect we showed them in the first half. They wanted to be able to counterattack us and we conceded too many of these.
"We made three or four mistakes and played with fear.
"The game in London will be difficult but after this game we have a 40 per cent chance to go through," added Mancini, who had previously measured their prospects at just 20 per cent.
Nevertheless, Mourinho refused to be drawn on Mancini's comments, and also had a swipe at the man he replaced as Inter Milan coach in 2008 by crediting their performance on former coach Fatih Terim.
"They were good last year and they are good this year. Basically it's the team that Fatih built. The team that was champions last year and got to the quarter-finals. So I think Fatih did a great work (sic)," said Mourinho.