Jose Moaninho - one, two, three... set me free!
Another club, third year, but the same old story! It happened at Real Madrid, it happened at Chelsea, and now it seems like an encore at Manchester United!
Jose Mourinho signs for a club, does well over the first couple of years (he is a serial winner - whether you love him or hate him!), but come year no.3, drumroll.... it all goes kaput!
Is it a psychological thing, or does he just get bored in the third year? Or is it plain "commitment phobia"! Jose's worst critics would even describe it as a way to earn a fat paycheck (read: severance bonus)!
Before this season started, he was literally begging the Manchester United hierarchy to deliver him a world-class central defender, with loads of names like Alderweireld, Maguire being thrown around, plus an audacious attempt to sign Diego Godin from Atletico (it was a bait really, Godin's agent played Manchester United and Mourinho quite well there!).
There are two ways to look at this - Mourinho was right in demanding a defender, even when he had loads of them in the squad already - Jones, Smalling, Bailly, Lindelof to name a few, or the Manchester United board decided enough was enough in terms of the money spent. There could be arguments on each side, but the end result remains the same - Mourinho's odds of getting sacked are being slashed by the betting companies with every passing day (and result!).
Mourinho seems to have started displaying his displeasure by stating, and starting midfielders in the defensive positions (it was quoted that Matic would start as the central defender, but it was actually Herrera who started against Tottenham). It was either a "throwing your toys out of the pram" gesture, or a clever ploy to indicate his frustration! This was followed up by a whimsical moment in the press conference when he stormed out for an apparent lack of respect for his trophy cabinet!
Mourinho excels in playing the pantomime villain, always trying to take the pressure off his players by creating a siege mentality, and he's done it successfully over and over again. Many of his players swear by him and would run through brick walls (sic!) for him. However, the end is near when he starts alienating the star players, he did it with Casillas and Ronaldo at Real Madrid, Hazard at Chelsea (in his second spell) and now with Pogba (and Martial) at Manchester United. Jose takes the stars heads-on, and leaves the club with an unsavoury choice between retaining their prized asset or their superstar manager! History has proved that it's always the players that prevail, and Jose moves on to "greener" pastures (though Jose may find it really difficult to find an upgrade on Manchester United!).
All in all, this seems like "old wine in a new bottle", and it only seems a question of "when" rather than "if"! Time to wage a few quids on Jose getting his P45 before we enter 2019! Or will "The Special One" buck the trend this time?