Monday, June 3, 2013

It won't be all rosy for Jose at Chelsea

It has been officially confirmed now. The return of Jose Mourinho is going to light up the Premier League once again as "The Special One" goes back "home" to Stamford Bridge. He returns to where he feels loved by his fans and loathed by the rest. He'll feel like a king when he steps into the Stamford Bridge dugout. It'll probably feel like whatever he does, he knows he's already a legend in the eyes of the fans. It's all sunshine, flowers and a bit of love all over the place. John Terry will be dancing with joy (in his full kit of course), Lampard will be dangling his new contract in the air as his "father figure" is back, Torres get the message. Everyone related to Chelsea Football Club is expecting this to be a match made in heaven.

Mourinho will definitely make the Premier League more entertaining (poking or not). He'll probably even bring success to Chelsea (not that they have been lacking it - 6 major trophies since he left). But things in England have changed quite drastically since August 2007 that it might not be so dandy after all. Manchester City have the millions to compete. Sir Alex is gone. Chelsea have won a Champions League since then, as have Manchester United. Tottenham have improved immensely.
Arsenal, well, they're still without a trophy (no changes there) and Liverpool are just being Liverpool. But where Mourinho will face his biggest test lies in two aspects. 

Firstly with the media. A lot has been made of him being a media darling with the English press. They love him. They used to cherish his every interview, whether he was talking about bird flu or about tactics in the Premier League. There was always a bit of fun when Mourinho spoke to them and they responded always in a manner that made it a perfect relationship.

However, since then the English media has become a bit more fierce. When they pick on a person, they'll make sure his life is making as much news in the front pages as it is on the back pages. Just as things have changed on the pitch, a lot has changed off it too. Mario Balotelli's stories were great sellers, Luis Suarez was crucified by the media, Ryan Giggs' shenanigans were exposed, John Terry's cheating excursions were playtime stuff for them and Mourinho will be set to face the wrath of a now unforgiving media who'll be looking to beat him when he's down. They're not what they once were. We've also got the Twittersphere now that makes sure every breath a football personality takes is being watched and judged under the most precise of microscopes. Will Jose like that? He fell out with the Italian and Spanish media for such issues and the English will be rubbing their hands with glee.

Secondly, with Roman Abramovich. Jose Mourinho still remains the longest-serving manager under the Russian. For 3 years and a half he was in charge of the club and 7 managers have since come in to try and emulate his success but have been shown the door despite some pretty decent results. Mourinho doesn't have the luxury of time with Roman this time around. If he goes through a bad patch, he might be shown the door. A 4-year contract means nothing in Roman's world and with their supposed clashes in the past which ultimately led to Mourinho leaving the club, there is no guarantee that it won't happen again. Bringing Jose back to Chelsea is like getting together with an ex-girlfriend you had troubles with, but whom everybody believed you were perfect for. The troubles don't just vanish. They're still there. The relationship people should be worried about is not Mourinho and Chelsea Football Club. It's Jose Mourinho and Roman Abramovich.

The clashes and disagreements are bound to come up again. Because just like when you get back with your ex-girlfriend, you know old sh*t is going to stir up. For those fearing the return of Mourinho to England, don't. He'll start off with a bang for a few months and then things will get messy (not Lionel); and Mourinho has proven over the past few years that when the going gets tough, he gets going. Faulting the players, the owners or anything and anyone but himself. Expect something similar this time. England has changed. The Premier League has changed. Mourinho has changed. But Roman hasn't...if anything, he's gotten less lenient since August 2007. Being successful means nothing as a Chelsea manager anymore. Ancelotti, Benitez and Di Matteo will testify.

Whatever happens, next season is going to be interesting and having Mourinho back in the Premier League is an added value to the entertainment it provides.

1 comment:

  1. With me, illusions are bound to be shattered. I am here to shatter all illusions. Yes, it will irritate you, it will annoy you - that's my way of functioning and working. I will sabotage you from your very roots! Unless you are totally destroyed as a mind, there is no hope for you.