Jose Mourinho

Position Midfielder
Born Jan 26, 1963
Nationality Portugal Portugal
Nickname The Special One
Team History
:pt:União Futebol Comércio e Indústria 1985 - 1987
G.D. Sesimbra 1983 - 1985
C.F. Os Belenenses 1982 - 1983
Rio Ave F.C. 1980 - 1982
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A football manager born in Setubal, Portugal, Jose Mario dos Santos Felix Mourinho, began his tryst with football early in life. Born to Portuguese footballer Jose Felix Mourinho, who played professional football for Vitoria de Setubal and Belenenses, and an affluent mother who was a teacher, Mourinho was born into a comfortable middle-class family. Competitive and popular from a young age, Mourinho was exposed to both sides of the game, when his father stopped playing and started coaching instead.

Mourinho himself tried his hand at playing the game, and started out with the Belenenses youth team. He soon moved up to the senior team, but it was clear that he did not posess the right amount of power and calm to be a good professional footballer. Taking note of his shortcomings, Mourinho opted to become a football coach instead, though he mother tried to get him to attend business school instead. Fortunately Mourinho did not last a day, and he soon enrolled into the Technical University of Lisbon to pursue sports science. Mourinho had brief spells as a youth team coach, and then an assistant manager, during the early 90s. Some of the teams include the youth team at Vitoria de Setubal and Estrela da Amadora. Former Scotland manager, Andy Roxburgh took note of the young Mourinho right at this stage, noting his drive.

Mourinho decided on an unconventional move and took up a position as an interpreter for Sir Bobby Robson, which turned out to be a great decision as he learnt a lot from the veteran coach. Mourinho remained with Sir Bobby Robson, while the latter was coachin Sporting Libson and F.C. Porto, and even followed him out of Portugal to Spain, to join Barcelona, where he even learnt Catalan. The main reason Mourinho got the opportunity to hone his coaching skills was because his style was complimentary with Robson’s. This brought together Mourinho’s traits of planning and training, with Robson’s direct man-management. When Robson left Barcelona, Mourinho did not follow him, though they remain good friends.

After his stint with Robson, Mourinho worked with his successor in Barcelona, Louis van Gaal, once again picking up invaluable tips from the Dutchman. Barcelona went on to win the La Liga two times, and Gaal soon picked up on Mourinho’s skill and entrusted him with coaching duties of FC Barcelona B. He even let Mourinho take over the first team for some matches such as the 2000 Copa Catalunya, which Mourinho won.

Mourinho soon shifted focus to coaching his own team, and opportunity arrived in September 2000, when he took up the position of head coach with Benfica. His stint with the club began with a controversy, when there was debate over the new assistant coach. While the Benfica hierarcy chose Jesualdo Ferreira, Mourinho opted for Carlos Mozer, retired Benfica defender. Mourinho’s decision paid off as Benfica went on to beat arch rivals Sporting. After failing to get the president to renew his contract, Mourinho resigned from the club and joined with Uniao de Leiria in 2001. After considerable success with the club, Mourinho soon started drawing eyeballs from the bigger Portugueuse clubs.

In 2002, Mourinho moved to FC Porto, taking up the position of head coach. His entry was a successful one, with Mourinho taking the team to win the Portuguese Liga, UEFA Cup and the Cup of Portugal in 2003. His ability to pick out the perfect Porto team, aided his efforts to guide the team to victory. Mourinho also went ahead and published team training details on the club’s website, which was greeted with mixed reactions.

One of the more memorable games was against Manchester United, which pitted him against Alex Ferguson. Porto went on to nab the match after Costinha managed an injury time goal. His ascent did not end there, with the team winning the league title for the second time in a row in 2004, as well as the UEFA Champions League, the highest football honour in European football. Mourinho was soon flooded with offers from European clubs, though he clearly stated his preference for Liverpool, which in turn hired Spanish coach Rafael Benitez to fill in their managerial position.

Mourinho’s next move was to Chelsea, in 2004, which made him the highest paid manager in the history of football, with a salary of 4.2 million pounds a year. Mourinho’s response to this earned him the title ‘The Special One’, a term he coined for himself. The first thing he did was hire his old team from Porto, as well as Steve Clarke, former Chelsea player. He also made several expensive decisions, spending over 70 million pounds in transfer fees. Some of the players include Didier Drogba, Micheal Essien, Ricardo Carvalho and Tiago. All his moves paid off, with Chelsea nabbing the League Cup from Liverpool, in Cardiff, a match during which Mourinho was escorted away from the touchline. This was because he had responded to the taunts of the Liverpool fans during the game, by putting finger to his mouth.

He went on to win two Premier League titles, consecutively, in 2005 and 2006. Several domestic titles were also credit to the coach Mourinho. Despite all the success, Mourinho had his fair share of controversy, mainly due to his outspoken nature. When he was awarded a medal for the Premier League win in the 2005-06 season, he threw both the medal and his blazer in the crowd, and repeated the act when he was presented a second medal.

Mourinho stirred another controversy by hiring Andriy Shevchenko for a record fee, in the summer of 2006. Unfortunately Shevchenko, one of the most highly credited strikers during this time, did not play well in his first season with Chelsea. Instead, his strike partner, Didier Drogba walked away with the highest scoring of his career in that season. Shevchenko was eventually dropped from the starting line up of the team, in fact during the Champions League match, Shevchenko was not even put on the bench. Another valuable player that Mourinho brought onto the team was German captain, Michael Ballack.

All these decisions led to a great amount of friction between Mourinho and team owner Roman Abramovich, leading to rumours of a parting of ways between the two. Mourinho himself put the rumours to rest with claims that the only way he would leave the club would be if they did not renew his contract in June 2010, or he was fired. His next claim was to win the quadruple, with the League Cup, UEFA Champions League title, the Premier League title and the FA Cup. This did not materialize even thought Chelsea won the League Cup and the 2007 FA Cup final, as they let go of the Premier League title and the UEFA Champions League title.

But as a mark of his place amongst the top coaches of the world, Mourinho was named the best football manager in the world by International Federation of Football History and Statistics, for two consecutive seasons, 2004-05 and 2005-06.

In September 2007, Mourinho suddenly and unexpectedly walked out of Chelsea, claiming mutual consent. Mourinho moved to Internazionale, mid-2008, on a three year contract, succeeding Roberto Mancini. Bringing most of his old staff with him, Mourinho hired former Inter player, and head coach of their youth academy, Giuseppe Baresi, as his assistant. Ever the charmer, Mourinho addressed the press solely in Italian at the first press meet, claiming to have learnt the language in just three weeks.

Mourinho brought in three players, Sulley Muntari, Ghanian footballer, Ricardo Quaresma, Portuguese player and Mancini, Brazilian winger. Three months into his new position, Mourinho took the team to victory in the Supercoppa Italiana, and ended with season with the Serie A league title. But he lost out on both the UEFA Champions League title and the Coppa Italia, when they were beaten by Sampdoria in the semis. As part of the UEFA propaganda to make bigger clubs play local players more, Mourinho played 18-year old Mario Balotelli and Davided Santon extensively.

By the end of the season, Mourinho’s performance was proving to be a disappointment to Italian fans, particularly after the team played dismally in the Champions League. In addition, Mourinho’s controversial relations with the media further intensified the friction. In one particular instance, he claimed that Carlo Ancelotti, then coach of Milan and Luciano Spalletti, then coach of Roma, would end the season without winning a single title, and that Italian sportsjournalists resorted to intellectual prostitution. The ‘zero title’ claim caught on like wildfire, with other teams and even Nike jumping on the bandwagon and extensively using the phrase.

Inter was active with the regard to the transfer market, under Mourinho, who brought in players like Wesley Sniejder and Samuel Eto’o into the team, at very high costs. Mourinho also had trouble with Italian national team coach Marcello Lippi, when the latter claimed that Juventus would win the Scudetto, which was considered disrespectful to Inter by Mourinho. He also remained largely critical of the refereeing in Italy.

In 2009, even though the team had a slow start, Mourinho created the first treble in Italian history and won the Coppa Italia, UEFA Champions League and the Serie A league title, all in the same year. He also earned the distinction of being the third manager in the history of football to win the UEFA Champions League title twice, with two different teams. The other two managers who earned the title before him are Ernst Happel and Ottmar Hitzfeld.

Currently Mourinho is the head coach of Spanish giant Real Madrid C.F., a position he took up on the 28th of May, 2010. Till 9th May 2010, Mourinho was at 136 home league game wins and since 2002, Mourinho has won at least one trophy every season. Some of his personal wins include UEFA Manager of the Year and UEFA Champions League Manager of the Year, for 2002-03 and 2003-04, Premier League Manager of the Year 2004-05 and 2005-06. Mourinho also holds an honorary degree from the Technical University of Lisbon for his achievements in football.

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