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When Jose Mourinho left Chelsea, he left with his reputation was understandably tainted.
Chelsea won the league two years ago, and last year had the worst title defence in Premier League history (even though Leicester will likely take that crown at the end of the Season).
Since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United have been on the hunt for a suitable replacement.
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal were deemed not good enough and neither had the reputation or personality needed to fill such big boots left by Sir Alex.
Points after 29 premier league games of their 1st season at Manchester United:
Van Gaal: 56
José Mourinho: 54
David Moyes: 48
After their home draw, last night (their ninth of the season in the Premier League) Manchester United have won just 37.5% of their home league matches this season.
This is the lowest in the post-1992 era and even the miserable seasons under Moyes and Van Gaal had a better win percentage at home.
Since the loss to Chelsea on the 23rd October last year, United have gone 20 games undefeated for in the Premier League but still remain outside the top 4.
Mourinho did inherit an unbalanced squad, but he didn’t inherit a useless one. And he had time and money to alter it.
Mourinho is widely recognised as one of the best managers of his generation so shouldn’t he be able to coach them improve them and make them more than they are (sort of how Conte is doing with Victor Moses).
Saying you need however many windows and however much money to change things sounds a lot like what a chequebook manager would say which ironically Mourinho hates being referred as.
Will United sack Mourinho?
When David Moyes was appointed United manager, many questioned if he was a big enough personality or reputation for Manchester United, which was evident in the lack of big name signings.
Even though many players would love to play for Manchester United, especially coming from abroad, players weren’t keen on playing for a manager they’d never heard of.
Of course, not, with Jose, Manchester United know there isn’t another manager with the attitude and football acumen to lead ‘the biggest football club in the world’.
That doesn’t mean there aren’t ‘better’ managers than Mourinho out there but to have the whole package of personality, reputation and results is hard to find and 2 out of 3 for now is totally fine with the United board.
Simple, Manchester United will finish this season wherever Jose takes them, which will probably be top 4/5 and if they manage to add the Europa League and guarantee a Champions League place to the EFL Cup win, that’s a bigger plus but regardless of the number of trophies and league place finish, United will spend again this summer.
Manchester United comply with FFP rules so them spending shouldn’t be an issue with opposing fans or the board and when Jose has the money and control to sign the players he wants, he usually creates an impressive team.
There will be huge talking points in the summer in regards to departures, most notably Wayne Rooney.
Another big summer is expected as Mourinho bolstered his scouting network in the summer by recruiting Ricardo Formosinho, Tommy Moller Nielsen, and Gerardo Guzman, Atletico Madrid’s former chief scout.
Jose already knows the ready-made talent available but wants to especially tap into the young South American talent as Football Scout Jorge Alvial said, “The age range which we are aiming for fluctuates between 17-24 years old, unless we see a Pele, Maradona, Messi, Ronaldo and Cruyff.”
A problem has been United are unable to break teams down and are missing too many chances, of course these aren’t Jose’s fault and luck is a part of it, but after a while you have to ask why you’re not being lucky and maybe it’s time to revise his attacking patterns that haven’t been working thus far instead of relying on individual brilliance to win matches.
All in all, I believe Jose stays at United for at least three years without winning anything and if he does win they’ll want to keep him for much longer.
With what seems to be unlimited money at his disposal, Jose will certainly build a winning team within that time and if not, whoever takes over after him will inherit a decent squad.
Written by Jonathan Roberts
Follow Jonathan on Twitter @missingstuds
Check out his awesome football blog, Missing Studs Football
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