The mercurial man from Portugal, Jose Mourinho - known in the media, somewhat affectionately, as 'The Special One' - has always been somewhat of a journeyman.

To predict his meteoric rise to the top, from Sir Bobby Robson’s 'translator' - still his nickname amongst the Catalan faithful - at Barcelona to footballing giant at the head of the mighty Real Madrid, one would need a touch of Jose's confidence.

From Porto to Real Madrid, via Chelsea and Inter Milan, Mourinho's two defining characteristics have been arrogance and an unshakeable will to win. It was once said of Thierry Henry that you can be cocky if you have the goods to back up the talk. The very best in sport have always been a self-confident bunch, and much like Muhammed Ali, Jose announced to the world that he would become 'The Greatest'.

Yet, despite league titles in four of the most competitive leagues in the world, and a clutch of European trophies, talk inevitably turns to the future. Jose’s longstanding friendship with Sir Alex Ferguson has had him touted as the next Manchester United manager. While it is no secret that Chelsea and the blue half Manchester also admire Mourinho's credentials, many would suggest that either club would be a step down from the heights of Madrid.

No one would doubt that Mourinho's future lies in club football, but what will become of his international career?

A stint managing Portugal would be the obvious choice, but what about Jose's adopted nation, England?

The love affair between the Special One and the English media was not always so rosy. Many will remember the headlines regarding Mourinho and Chelsea's allegations against Frank Rijkaard and the media were not quick to warm to Jose's unique brand of self-promotion and confidence. A telling sign of this came when mentor and friend Ferguson suggested that Mourinho enjoyed the pre-match mind games.

Jose, to the media and football fans, was then and remains a Marmite figure: you either love or loathe him. Thankfully, the juxtaposition of the British self-effacing character and Jose's brash arrogance intrigued pundits and fans alike. Mourinho is what we, the British public, wish we could be. In England, Jose is the pantomime villain and the reluctant hero all at once.

And it is for these reasons that in Russia 2018, Mourinho could lead an England side to his special brand of glory. 

 

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