With Jose Mourinho into his third season of a second stint in charge at Chelsea, Didier Drogba has hinted that his former boss is jinxed and has come to the end of a management cycle, with the Blues enduring their worst start to a Premier League campaign.
The 37-year-old, who joined MLS side Montreal Impact in the summer, reportedly wrote in his new autobiography, 'Commitment', as per the Mirror, that things "came in three-year cycles", with Mourinho having relatively short stints in any given managerial position.
"I believe things often come in three-year cycles," Drogba said, "[and] we had arrived at the end of a cycle.
BECOME A WRITER
Do you have what it takes? Sign up today and send over your 250 word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay3
Article continues below
"By the start of the fourth [season] that Jose had been in charge, I think we had started to reach a point where it was sometimes harder for his message to get through.
"We wanted to hear it, we tried, but somehow we had lost a little bit of what made us special."
Article continues below
It is an interesting point that Drogba makes, with Mourinho's joint-longest spell in charge coming at Chelsea and Real Madrid, where he took charge of both teams for three years. But for a manager of his calibre, the 'Special One' hasn't lasted particularly long wherever he has been.
There are two sides to every story and, firstly, he departed Porto for a bigger challenge after winning the Champions League with the Portuguese club, opting for a move to England and Chelsea in particular.
Mourinho chose not to celebrate the victory with his Porto players, but seemingly thought up a name for himself upon his arrival at Chelsea instead: the 'Special One'.
Luckily for the Portuguese, he quickly proved his 'specialness', winning two Premier League titles, the FA Cup, League Cup and the Community Shield during his first spell at Stamford Bridge. However, a loss to Aston Villa and goalless draw at home to Blackburn Rovers spelled the end for Mourinho at the start of his fourth season, having finished runners-up the previous campaign.
It is debated whether Mourinho's exit really was mutual consent or a case of being sacked by owner Roman Abramovich, but seemingly what the former Porto boss had managed in his first couple of seasons was not working as well in the third and fourth.
Having fulfilled an ambition to manage in Italy, with Inter Milan, and win the league title, Mourinho eyed Spain after admitting his decision to leave was due to a fallout with the Italian media.
Two Serie A titles, the Coppa Italia and Super Cup in two seasons was to be undermined by Mourinho's disagreements with the media - something that has at times been apparent in England too.
Mourinho has been quick to hit out at the media and avoid media commitments when the going gets tough. Is it that, in fact, he cannot deal with failure and is so used to success that when something goes against his team, he doesn't know how to deal with it?
However, his departure from the San Siro wasn't on a bad note, having been offered the opportunity to take over at the Santiago Bernabeu and duly winning La Liga, the Copa del Rey and Super Cup with Real Madrid.
But again, Mourinho was not to see out a deal that was to keep him at the club until 2016, managing three seasons in the capital, before it was "mutually agreed" that their relationship would be ended, with just a month left of the 2012/13 season.
Thirteen points off Barcelona, beaten by local rivals Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Cup final and falling out of the Champions League at the semi-final stage, Mourinho deemed the season as the "worst of my career," according to BBC Sport.
"One of his many qualities is that he brings a winning mentality to all the the teams he manages," Drogba added in his autobiography.
And perhaps it's that "winning mentality" that is costing Mourinho so dearly this time around at Chelsea. There is no question he has the players capable of winning the league, and, in fact, the Champions League, but something has gone terribly wrong somewhere down the line.
Mourinho, like most managers, knows how to behave when they win. However, he seemingly cannot handle losing. It's not new to the 52-year-old to behave in this way - it has been evident for many years.
The former Real boss was sacked with Chelsea fifth during his first spell in charge, but Abramovich has avoided pulling the trigger on Mourinho's second spell in charge with the club on 11 points after 12 games, three points off the relegation places.
It could be argued that the Russian is hoping the Portuguese can turn it around and avoid paying out a reported £30 million, according to the Daily Express, if the 49-year-old was to sack Mourinho.
The Portuguese has an excuse for every goal conceded; every decision that goes against them; every point dropped. But, perhaps most costly of all, his desire to defend his players to the death will cause his downfall.
In many cases this is a good thing, but in the process, Mourinho is putting his and the club's reputation on the line - and how for much longer is Abramovich going to stand for that?
Mourinho is one of the best managers around in the current era, but to sustain that beyond three seasons, without the controversy and downfall in form, Drogba has a point.
The 52-year-old, who has the ambition to one day manage his native Portugal, plays up to the media too often, sulks when things don't go his way and has seemingly lost the dressing room.
Has Mourinho thrown the towel in, after his title-winning side returned this season not even half the team they were last season? Maybe he is finding it hard to motivate himself during his third season back at the club.
However, one significant reason why the Portuguese should buck his trend with his media rants, arguments with referees and accusations is to energise and motivate his squad to recover their season and to save his future at Stamford Bridge.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms