Jose Mourinho. The self-proclaimed "Special One". At this time last year, many people would agree that the Real Madrid manager deserves such a title. However, this season has been considerably less than special.
It is hard to argue that Mourinho has not been successful. He has led teams to league championships in Portugal (Porto), England (Chelsea), Italy (Inter Milan), and Spain (Real Madrid). He also has two UEFA Champions League titles (Porto and Inter Milan).
Although these are strong statistics, the current season has been less impressive for Mourinho. The reigning La Liga champions see themselves in third place, sixteen points behind league leaders Barcelona.
An early exit from the UEFA Champions League also looks possible with a trip to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United looming. Real Madrid has not performed at a top level. They have lacked discipline, consistency, creativity, and heart.
Mourinho has always been able to bring the best out of his players. In the past, he has taken the blame in order to take pressure off of the players most notably at Chelsea; this is what has made him such a successful manager.
This season has seen him calling out individuals and making excuses for poor performances. Not only do the players seem uninspired, but so does the manager. He has been linked with a move back to Chelsea but will return to Stamford Bridge with a whimper rather than his usual confident strut if he proves unable to turn things around.
If Mourinho continues going on the way he has, the Real Madrid squad will continue to struggle, they will wind up without a trophy, and they may be left without a manager come the end of the season. If Mourinho is so "special", now is the time to prove it.
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