Mauricio Pochettino‘s side have struggled throughout the campaign, there is no doubting that, and while Chelsea are a club that can’t really be judged by the normal measures, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to put much of a positive spin on their season.
Mourinho, by all means, has hardly had a stellar season either as he finds himself without a job after being sacked by Roma earlier in the campaign with his former club then sat ninth in the Serie A table.
Yet Mourinho – surely among the greatest Blues legends of the last 25 years – has always kept the door open for a return to ‘my Chelsea’, as he affectionately refers to the club he lives 200 metres away from – something fans are starting to recall.
The only thing is, it’s a very different outfit from the one he joined in 2004, and then again in 2013, so the question is quite simple: Chelsea have spent themselves into an over-crowded squad and FFP problems so bad they can’t even sack their current boss – so why does he even want to come back?
Chelsea have struggled this season under Mauricio Pochettino with the manager now at risk
Jose Mourinho was dismissed as Roma boss after his side were left ninth in the Serie A
The Portuguese manager is considered among the greatest legends at the Blues
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Mourinho, for most of us, is inextricably linked to Chelsea, having sauntered and smirked his way into our collective consciousness in the early 2000s after his monumental achievements with Porto.
For some, he exists as an almost mythical figure, with younger fans perhaps struggling to match this increasingly brittle, toxic and spiky character with the tales of his charisma and exploits from his first spell in west London.
Some might point to his downward career trajectory in recent years, but it remains he has the footballing brain to transform any team in the planet. The only obstacle has really been his own malleability – or rather lack thereof.
At Chelsea, though, he would find a club prepared to roll out the red carpet for him, and largely attend to his every beck and call. Pochettino is a fine manager, among the best in the world, but at Chelsea they simply do not come higher than Mourinho.
For a manager that loves getting his way as much as Mourinho does, that is a very appealing prospect. Add in the fact that Todd Boehly’s cheque book seemingly doesn’t run out of pages, and it all begins to take shape.
Then there is the fact that he is almost unilaterally adored in that little corner of the world; we all have our egos, but it is probably fair to say that a man who introduced himself as ‘The Special One’ likes to have his pandered to from time to time.
The bat signal has already gone up from some members of the Chelsea fanbase for Mourinho to return – accompanied by Boy Wonder John Terry in some calls for aid – and the idea of being the saviour for his old club must be a difficult one to ignore.
He would also have a chance to live closer to his daughter, Matilde, who owns an award-winning jewellery shop in west London, and with his son, Jose Jnr, a burgeoning young coach, he could bring his family closer than they have been in a long time alongside his wife of 35 years Matilde Faria at their £25million mansion.
Mourinho sauntered and smirked his way into the collective consciousness with Chelsea in 2004
Mourinho won back-to-back league titles after arriving at Chelsea from Treble-winners Porto
Mourinho’s daughter Matilde (right) owns an award-winning jewellery shop in west London
Naturally, it all hinges on whether Chelsea would even want him. Pochettino has not had the desired impact, but the Blues were always going to be a project; a team that would need three seasons to really mount a challenge at the top again.
There is the glaring negative against Mourinho that he hasn’t actually won a league title in nine years, and only three major honours since then. For a manager with the reputation of being a trophy-winner, it’s not exactly a good look.
Todd Boehly (right) and Clearlake Capital are onto their fourth manager, plus the caretaker tenure of Bruno Saltor last campaign
His recent appointments have ended somewhat acrimoniously, and he can be a polarising figure to say the least, not afraid to speak his mind, and will stand firm on any point that he feels calls for his famed stubbornness.
It is difficult to pinpoint a club that he has left in a better position than when he joined; sure, he brings clubs forward and earns them trophies, but he ultimately tends to be sacked having brought them back down again and at an eco-system as delicate as Chelsea is right now, that is sure to be a massive red flag.
His former Chelsea players of the Terry, Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, Petr Cech era naturally speak glowingly of their old boss Jose, but there are some at Man United that would probably give a very different account of their time under his command.
His previously unquestionable reputation is now, well, questionable. He has lost the gilt-edged sheen to his name that bumped him up to the top of any managerial shortlist, and is now more often remembered for his toxic exits than his trophy-winning exploits.
And that’s ignoring the massive elephant in the room; Mourinho has never shown an inclination to work with younger squads brimming with potential, instead preferring his own tried and tested formula of ready-made winners and seasoned professionals.
In the current Chelsea squad there are precisely two of those (Raheem Sterling and Thiago Silva). Pochettino was brought in for his ability to mold young teams and develop them into world-beaters – a very wise appointment in that respect – and there aren’t many better than him at doing so. Certainly not Mourinho.
Plus – and it’s a very big obstacle – Pochettino is still the manager. Yes, he’s dangling over a precipice, the club concerned about whether they can even afford his £10million severance fee, but he is still there, and at the moment looks set to stay.
Mourinho’s recent track history would indicate he leaves clubs in a worse position than when he joined
Although his position is precarious, Pochettino is still in charge at the Stamford Bridge club
There are plenty of reasons why Mourinho would want to return to Stamford Bridge; a heroic reunion, the chance to save his club, living closer to his family – perhaps even to surround himself with his past glories to convince himself he still deserves a seat at the top tables.
Boehly and Clearlake Capital have remarkably tried almost every incarnation of manager to try and bail them out of the hole their wallets and trigger-fingers have got them into.
They tried sticking with the manager that was in place (well, for seven games), then they brought in the young, exciting coach, before turning to legendary former player, and when even that didn’t work they at last snapped up one of the most well-regarded managers in the game.
Now that doesn’t seem to be going exactly to plan, either. It is, however, very much in keeping with the Mourinho we know and love that he would undoubtedly back himself to succeed were all before him have failed.
Source From: Serie A News, Fixtures and Results | Mail Online
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