Jose Mourinho - The Serial Winner
        Jose Mourinho - The Serial Winner

Jose Mourinho - The Serial Winner


By Anuran Haloi | Published on 11:23 AM, 21 Oct 2020


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"There are many poets in football. But poets don’t win you titles."

-        --- Jose Mourinho

 There are 4 schools of thought in research methodology design. Constructivism, Post positivism, Pragmatism, and Transformative. The constructivist school of thought believes in theory generation and multiple personality participation along with social and historical construction. The transformative school of design is also based on power and change-oriented belief. On the other hand, Constructivism is based on determination and empirical observation of measurement. This also coincides with the Pragmatic school of thought. Pragmatism believes in problem-centered, pluralistic, and consequence-based actions. It is no good or bad. Just the perception of being the work done.


Jose Mourinho as a manager belongs to the school of Pragmatism and Constructivism.

If it helps you understand the other schools you could take examples of the greats like Pep Guardiola, Marcelo Bielsa, Johan Cruyff, etc.

Before taking on Chelsea back in 2004 he was already a superstar. He notably won the Champions League with Portuguese club, Porto. Pupil of Sir Bobby Robson at Barcelona in the ’90s and a Champions League winner with Porto; Jose already declared himself as the ‘The Special One’.   

“Liverpool are a team that interests everyone and Chelsea does not interest me so much because it is a new project with lots of money invested in it. I think it is a project which, if the club fails to win everything, then Abramovich could retire and take the money out of the club. It's an uncertain project. It is interesting for a coach to have the money to hire quality players but you never know if a project like this will bring success.”

-Jose Mourinho before joining Chelsea (2004-05)


Jose loves a challenge. He won 2 premierships (2004-05,2005-06), the League Cup (2007), Community Shield (2005), and the FA Cup (2007) in his first three years with Chelsea before departing for a historic stint at Inter Millan in Italy.

Despite winning the Scudetto by a 10-point margin, Mourinho's first season in Italy was viewed as disappointing, as the club failed to improve on the performances in the Champions League. The demand was escalating. His stint at Inter was controversial. He had feuds with managers such as Carlo Ancelotti at AC Milan, Claudio Ranieri at Juventus, and even with Marcelo Lippi, the head coach of Italy. He never hesitated to have a row with even the journalists. But he was building a team that would have laid life for him on the pitch.

Remember the controversial yet iconic handcuffs gesture by him after a draw against Sampdoria? He never shies away from letting the world know about what he believes. He fought with almost everyone other than his players and the fans.

He was at the greatest coaching seminar the world has seen (at Barcelona) when the game as we know it was shaped. But he did not draw the same lesson as everybody else did. The other managers drew a possession-based and space finding football. But he believed in reactive football. The year 2009 was a special year. Barcelona under Pep Guardiola dominated and redefined the way football was played. Winning 6 available trophies and boasting a footballing legend Lionel Messi. In 2010 Jose’s Inter faced the mighty titans, Barcelona. It was the beginning of one of the most celebrated modern-day rivalry. Pep Guardiola vs Jose Mourinho. He knew it was not an easy task to dethrone Barcelona. He decided to play some mind games before the 2nd leg. Notably, that year’s Champions League Final was at the Santiago Bernabéu, home of Real Madrid. Barcelona’s obsession to play the final there was emphatic. The “Anti Madridismo” was an obsession.  His famous quote startled the heads of Barca.

“A dream is purer than an obsession. A dream is about pride.”

The mind game was spot on. But if we look more closely at the side of Inter Milan and the football they were playing at that moment; it would be a grave injustice to tell the story based on just a mind game of Jose. They played some of the most grueling and relentless football. The Messi Cage for a false 9 in the 2nd leg is a famous tactical breakthrough. His side improvised and adapted against a side who was known for their ruthlessness. Their unexpectedly thrilling display of high pressing football won the tie on a 3-2 aggregate.

“We were a team of heroes. We sweated blood.” 

His provocative celebration after that famous win was an audition for Real Madrid.

He departed winning a treble with Inter. Two full-grown men, Jose and Marco Materazzi reduced to tears in an emotional goodbye. Such passion!  So rare and so precious. If I have to recall such an emotional farewell, I would definitely mention Jurgen Klopp’s farewell in Infront of the yellow wall of Dortmund.

The most decorated and controversial journey of his life was about to begin at Real Madrid. He was loved beyond imagination but the faithful of Bernabéu also protested him with the same passion when they didn’t like what was happening.

A saga of Blood, sweat, and redemption was staging up.

Prior to Mourinho's arrival, Real Madrid had underperformed. Their 2009–10 season was marked by disappointments. A round of 32 knockouts by Segunda División B team Alcorcón, and elimination from the Champions League by Lyon in the round of 16. From 2005 to 2010 the club had suffered six consecutive exits at the round of 16.

His arrival was no less than a Galactico. He was the 11th manager in the past seven years at the club. The club was going through turmoil mind you.

His year of building the team saw the rise of some scintillating counter-attacking, high pressing, and pace-oriented football. He acknowledged and understood the dominance of Barcelona under Pep. The famous 5-0 loss at El Classico made it seem like Barca is impregnable. The only way to shatter the footballing dynasty of Pep was to play by Madrid’s strength and exploit their weakness. He bought players like Sami Khedira, Mesut Özil, Angel Di Maria, Carvalho. He installed superior physicality in defense and midfield. The rise of Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo were underway. On 20th April 2011, Mourinho won his first trophy in Spanish football as Real Madrid defeated arch-rivals Barcelona 1–0 in the Copa del Rey final ending Real Madrid's 18-year-long Copa del Rey drought. It was also Real's first trophy since their 2007–08 La Liga title.

Jose Mourinho’s side was terrifying. He won the La Liga in his second season by a record margin of 100 points, first-ever by any European Side. Real Madrid scored for fun. They ripped teams apart for fun. They defeated Barcelona at their home to advance in La Liga race. He took a jibe at Barcelona. He exhausted Pep Guardiola. Every Classico was controversial and iconic because of various reasons.

Mourinho Cult instilled the winning and fighting mentality back in Madrid. Under Pep Guardiola Barcelona seemed invincible. People hailed them as the greatest team ever. No one was near their quality. But to win La Liga by such a record margin at that time speaks the testament of that Madrid side. The team he built went on to win things people dream of. It’s a shame that Mourinho’s side never won the CL. But he built a team of match winners. Los Blanco’s 10th Champions League title (La Decima) was a very special silverware, many regards as the fruitful of Jose. The core players went on to win 3 consecutive Champions League titles.

His 3rd season was extremely controversial. He fought with players like Iker Casillas and Sergio Ramos, the world cup winning Captains of Real Madrid. Their season was bumpy and full of heartbreaks. His side lost 3rd consecutive Semi-Final in CL. His only silverware was Supercopa de España against Barcelona. He was also criticized for controversial incidents, including poking Tito Villanova (assistant coach at Barcelona) in the eye during a brawl, clashes with journalists and Real officials, and frequent hints that Barça received favorable treatment from Referee.

Perhaps the bravest and unimaginable act of him as a manager came on December 1, 2012. His team was being criticized. He was on the crucible of Madridistas. Before their match against Atletico Madrid on December 1st at a press conference, he said that he will answer the faithful of Los Blancos. 40 minutes before the Derby Kick off, he walked up to the side-lines of Bernabéu and faced the wrath of Madrid. He looked up in their eye and stood there silently. A few thousand whistles at first turned into pin-drop silence. Santiago Bernabéu passed their verdict. The stadium erupted again with the chants of “Hala Madrid” when the players walked on to the pitch. The team won the derby 2-0. The most demanding fan base was humbled.  

Mourinho was a man of character. You could see him fighting for his team, fixtures, referring decision. But he never threw his players under the bus. He brought an elite mentality to every team he went to. While celebrating the La Liga title he bowed in Infront of the team. He acknowledged that no team is above the club. Winning and losing is a part of the game.

“The Real Madrid shirt is white. It can stain of mud, sweat, and even of blood, but never of shame!”

Jose lived by those lines in Madrid.

He left Madrid at the end of the 2013-14 season and returned to Chelsea and won Premiership and League Cup again in 2015. His stint was full of ups and downs.

He was appointed as Manchester United Manager in 2016-17. He won League Cup and Europa League in the first season. His side oozed a brand of exciting football. His superstar redemption in Premier League saw the downfall in the next two seasons. This time he fought against the institution of Manchester United. His outspoken nature earned him much criticism. Even though he acknowledges his 2nd position finish in the 2017-18 season as his biggest achievement; he couldn’t earn the support of the fans and the board. He was sacked again.

He took a break from coaching after that.

Now he is the manager of Tottenham Hotspur. A club devoid of silverware for so long. Who could be better than Jose Mourinho? A proven winner.

For so many people it’s hard to believe that Jose will win again. There is a popular belief which says Mourinho plays Anti Football. His defensive Bus Parking (!) destroys the beautiful game of football. But only time would tell.

His story is a fairy tale. He is an Anti-Hero for many. But one thing no one can deny is that he is the winner.  Managers dream of such a career. Managers are hyped nowadays based on the success of a few seasons. Mourinho is hated because he won too much in too little time. 

It’s time for him to shine again. Good Luck Jose.


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