Wednesday 24 January 2018

We're through the looking glass with Jose Mourinho

2013 - New Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho holds up the shirt before the Chealsea FC press conference at Stamford Bridge in June 2013.
2013 - New Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho holds up the shirt before the Chealsea FC press conference at Stamford Bridge in June 2013.

Evan Fanning

THOUGH it was probably not the attribute he was referring to when he described himself as the 'Special One' all those years ago, Jose Mourinho's truly extraordinary gift is his ability to insert himself into the centre of proceedings, regardless of what has taken place.

So, when the storyline of the week concerns his tactical approach, it is perhaps unsurprising that we ended up with an existential tactical argument where his supporters start to resemble the footballing equivalent of Ukip.

Mourinho's successful rope-a-dope strategy against Liverpool last Sunday, followed by Real Madrid's thrashing of Pep Guardiola's Bayern Munich, sparked a backlash against "tippy tappy" football and keeping possession that was taken to with such relish that it's a surprise that nobody suggested the best way to now win a game would be to stay away from the pitch entirely, as no good whatsoever can come of entering the playing field.

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