‘It’s a lurid and colourful story’ – Eamon Dunphy on Jose Mourinho sacking
Jose Mourinho’s dismissal by Chelsea today was precipitated by much more than just matters of football, according to Eamon Dunphy, and he believes a soap opera may be afoot.
Chelsea announced this afternoon that they had parted ways with the Portuguese by mutual consent, following their worst start to a season since 1978.
The Stamford Bridge club were beaten 2-1 by Leicester last weekend, which was their ninth defeat in 16 league games. The London side are now in 16th place and just a point above the relegation zone.
Mourinho publicly lambasted his players in the aftermath of the loss to Vardy and co, and his departure appeared to be only a matter of time.
Speaking on RTÉ Radio 2’s Game On, Dunphy claimed that it was the former Real Madrid boss’ inability to develop Chelsea’ youth system and the waning form of players such as Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas and John Terry that contributed to his downfall.
“I’m not surprised. I think it has imploded so badly and spectacularly and there is no sign of recovery; in fact it’s getting worse every week.
“They lost at home Bournemouth before losing to Leicester so I’m not surprised. I think it’s a fascinating story because most of these things are not so interesting but this is.
“I think his brief from Abramovich was build a club that would produce its own players… as they imagine Manchester United and Barcelona do. That was the brief. Winning the championship last year was part of the plan, but it wasn’t the plan.
“The problem and this is why he had to go, the dynasty idea that he would build a club is gone and Abramovich won’t open the cheque book. Because in April, the board were given a list of players he wanted and they bought nobody. So that was ominous for Mourinho,” Dunphy said.
Moreover, according to the outspoken pundit, there were unseen components behind Mourinho’s second exit from the club since 2007, which had very little to with football.
“There’s one other factor in this; my understanding from my sources is that there’s much more to this than meets the eye. It regards the behaviour of certain people at the club, their personal behaviour and his reaction to it- players, yeah.
“People are already talking about it privately but they’re not saying anything publicly because it’s deeply libellous. We’re talking about relationships, and I think he’s had a shock. And when he talks about betrayal, I think it’s things that happened off the pitch.
"Something went wrong that is not connected with football but also the football project as envisaged by Abramovich when Mourinho came back that went wrong as well. It's a fascinating story. Whether the truth comes out, who knows - it will eventually. I know what the story is; it's a lurid and colourful story," he said.