Originally published by Pick Our Team on February 13 2013.
The Bernabeu exit looms large over Jose Mourinho. Wherever the Portuguese ends up in the summer, the inevitable intrigue surrounding the Special One’s relocation will guarantee that his flirting courtship with Europe’s richest clubs will be the transfer story of the off-season.
With Mancini’s place at City looking precarious, Roman running out of other top-end options at Chelsea, and both Paris and Anzhi rich enough to potentially woo Mou’s services, Jose won’t be lacking in options. For United fans hoping to see Mourinho take up the challenge of succeeding Sir Alex, these are worrying times.
At 71 years of age, the moment will come (sooner than many of us would like to admit to ourselves) for Fergie to retire, but as rivals circle above, Mou may not be prepared to wait. Can United afford to miss up on one of the world’s most prolific and effective coaches, especially if he ends up at Eastlands?
In a week in which the pope stepped down to allow fresh blood to better face the burden of leadership, the more extreme radicals within United’s online fan sites, blogs and forums have suggested Ferguson abdicates to ensure Mourinho’s winning ways benefit rather than block the club. After all, for the trophies won, teams built and memories forged, the club must continue after the age of Sir Alex. That he should sacrifice the ability to call time on his reign on his own terms however just doesn’t seem right considering his previous accomplishments and current competitiveness.
Personally, I don’t want Mourinho anywhere near the Old Trafford hot seat. While he may be able to boast league titles in the big three leagues, England, Italy and Spain, and two Champions League trophies alongside other honours, the cost clubs pay for his silverware success goes far beyond the monetary demands of his free-spending approach to team building.
Mourinho doesn’t just bring success but a whole attitude of egotism and win-at-all-costs hunger that infects his behaviour and the ethos of his teams. He is impatient, immoral and arrogant: so-called qualities that reactionary types confuse as attributes of success. Sir Alex himself is in many ways ruthless, calculating and bitter, but watching Jose gouge Tito Vilanova in the eye last year was just too much. Add to that the press histrionics and an attention-craving desire for the spotlight and you’re left with a man who will use Manchester United to serve his ambitions and agenda, rather than to serve the club and its principles.
While the world waits for tonight’s first leg in Madrid, Mourinho is waiting for the job he wants above all others to become available. I hope his patience runs out.