Jose Mourinho hit the world stage when his unheralded Porto knocked the great Manchester United, coached by the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson, out of the UEFA Champions League in the 2003-2004 season, and went on to win the tournament. He then became a household name when, on arriving in the English Premiership, won the title back to back. Since then, his career has taken a familiar pattern…
Mourinho the Genius. There is no other way to describe the Portuguese, when you list his records. Mourinho has set records in every country, with every team he has coached: he set the record for most points in a season by a Portuguese club with Porto; set the record for points garnered and goals conceded in the Premier League with Chelsea; became the first manager in history to take three different teams to the semi-final of the UEFA Champions League with Inter Milan; At Real Madrid, he set the records for most games won in a La Liga season (32), most away wins (16), most points obtained in any of the top European leagues (100), and improved the most goals scored record they already had set earlier (121).
Mourinho the ‘Madman’. Mourinho’s career has also been as controversial as it has been glittering. There is arguably no coach in the world that has commanded so much media attention, for the wrong reasons. He left his first managerial club at Benfica after only nine games. He’d asked the new team president for a raise that was turned down! He walked away from Porto and Inter after historical wins that would have secured his future with long term contracts; He started a feud in Spain – one he would never win – by annoying everybody, both within his own team and beyond; and he single-handedly ended his second stint at Chelsea by starting an unnecessary war with the team doctor.
Mourinho the Charlatan. In reality, is Jose Mourinho truly a genius, or is he a charlatan? A fraud that has perfected the art of selling a brand, only to look for an escape route once he is found out? The longest Mourinho stayed at any club is the four years he spent at Chelsea during his first appointment. Before and after that, the Portuguese has spent a total of 10 years at six other clubs, that’s an average of slightly over a year per team! Has it always been a case of Jose creating a diversion with his words before being found out, then re-enforcing that with more disruptive behaviour after, so he can jump ship?
Mourinho has become seemingly more unstable each passing year. Can that be construed as growing agitation that the shock tactics he uses to win is now well known, and no longer working? Klopp turned Liverpool around, Conte has turned Chelsea around, Jose must change Manchester United’s fortune, or history may condemn him as nothing but a fraud.