It is not a secret that Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho didn’t have the belief in Belgian forward Romelu Lukaku whilst he was at Chelsea.
But, why is he so backing of the big man up front now?
Mourinho/Lukaku Chelsea relationship
Mourinho was appointed as Chelsea manager as Lukaku was developing as a young striker.
Lukaku soon joined Everton on loan after missing the final penalty in the Blues’ 5-4 penalty shootout loss to Bayern Munich in the UEFA Super Cup final. The idea was that he was not going to be starting regularly and that was his wish, so he decided to leave the club for a loan spell with the Toffees.
During the loan spell, Lukaku mentioned about Mourinho ‘building a machine’ at Chelsea. The seemingly nice quotes then started to deteriorate with the Belgian claiming there had been little to no contact for a few months and Jose publicly accused Romelu of not telling people why he joined Everton.
After the loan spell, he joined Everton permanently. Both player/manager stories backed each other up with the Belgian asking to leave, seeking first team football and Chelsea granting that request.
Lukaku on leaving Chelsea (at the time): “Choices were made by me. By me. Not by them. Everyone says it is Mourinho’s fault but it is not his fault because I made the decision.”
Mourinho wants proven performers
Mourinho is often criticised for the lack of opportunities provided to younger players throughout his managerial career.
He is stubborn and prefers a team of reliable players on his path to success.
Winning is the primary target. Jose’s job has always been to win, wherever he’s been and so he trusts players that have proven themselves capable of producing what he needs to win titles.
Can you blame him? In a world where managers’ reigns have become months, rather than years.
A different Lukaku
Manchester United’s 24-year-old Romelu Lukaku is not the same Romelu Lukaku that Mourinho’s Chelsea allowed to leave the club.
Lukaku was young, developing and eager to prove himself. At Everton, he did just that.
He has since become one of the Premier League’s very best front men and attracted interest from his former club for a return to Stamford Bridge before opting to the surprise of the many to reunite with Portuguese boss Jose Mourinho at Manchester United.
Lukaku has proven himself with Everton, scoring 20+ goals in all competitions for three consecutive seasons. Jose is now backing his man from top to bottom as the striker his club has been crying out for.
Jose admires Lukaku’s work rate and sees that as something for his other players to look up to. The Belgian has scored 12 goals already this season and there’s plenty more to come from Mourinho’s Mr Reliable.
Written by Jordan Hackett
Follow Jordan on Twitter @Devildart180
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