When presented as Chelsea manager in 2004 Mourinho famously claimed he was ‘a special one’. On his arrival at Real Madrid, he denied he was Harry Potter, capable of performing miracles.
The truth may just be somewhere in the middle. The Setubal born tactician is certainly something out of the ordinary, his motivational techniques able to make players perform above themselves.
His tactical acumen is rarely called into question, and the way his Inter Milan team outfoxed Barcelona in the 2010 Champions League semi-finals will go down as one of the competition’s great masterstrokes. He often adapts the playing style of his side with the aim of countering and nullifying opponents. ‘Mou’ respects intelligent players capable of carrying out his instructions to the letter.
But Mourinho is not a man to outstay his welcome at any one club, nor the type of coach to embrace a club’s youth set-up or build a dynasty. His achievements have been exceptional, but they are generally built on considerable spending in the transfer market.
Mourinho’s CV compares with any other in world soccer. Chelsea wanted a first league title since 1955, Inter president Massimo Moratti craved a long overdue European Cup, and he delivered both before moving on to a new challenge.
That new challenge was to topple arguably the best club side in history - Barcelona. And he achieved that goal when he led Real Madrid to the 2012 Liga title.
Always well turned out, Mourinho fosters a Sir Alex Ferguson style ‘them against us’ siege mentality wherever he goes. He rarely leaves gathered hacks wanting for good soundbites, playing the game like a media-savvy politician, occasionally overstepping the mark.
- Name: José Mário dos Santos Félix Mourinho
- Nationality: Portuguese
- Date and Place of Birth: January 26, 1963 in Setúbal, Portugal
- Current Team: Real Madrid (Spanish League)
- Previous Teams: Benfica (2000), União de Leiria (2001-2002), Porto (2002-2004), Chelsea (2004-2007), Inter Milan (2008-2010), Real Madrid (2010-)
2003 Portuguese League
2003 Portuguese Cup
2003 UEFA Cup
2003 Portuguese Super Cup
2004 Portugese League
2004 UEFA Champions League
2005 English League
2005 English League Cup
2006 English League
2007 English League Cup
2007 FA Cup
2009 Italian League
2010 Italian League
2010 Italian Cup
2010 UEFA Champions League
2011 Spanish Cup
2012 Spanish League
“Nowadays a coach has to be multi-faceted. He has to master a lot of areas. From planning to implementation, methodology and leadership.”