In a press conference upon joining English side Chelsea and still fresh from winning Europe's elite competition, Jose Mourinho said, "Please don't call me arrogant, but I'm European champion and I think I'm a special one," which resulted in the media dubbing him "The Special One"
The Portuguese tactician did go on to prove how special he really was by guiding Chelsea to two successive Premier League crowns, an FA Cup as well as an FA Community Shield and two League Cup titles.
When Mourinho left Chelsea in 2007 - sad as it was then - he left a fulfilled man having elevated the London club to the enviable height of a dominant force in English football.
Several years down the line, Mourinho has gone on to prove his mettle in two different leagues in Europe and indeed confirmed he really is a special breed of manager.
"The Special One" again became European champion, this time guiding Inter Milan to the champions league crown as well as the Serie A title and the Coppa Italia - making Inter the first Italian club to complete the treble.
Mourinho carried his ingenuity to Madrid where he guided Real to win the Copa del Rey title in his first season with the Spanish giants and La Liga in the subsequent season.
Prior to Mourinho's arrival, Real had under-performed despite paying record transfer fees for Galacticos such as Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo.
While the former Porto manager's stint at Inter could be said to have been marked by all-round success, his time at Real was somewhat tainted with unmet expectations.
Towards the end of his time at Real, the present Chelsea manager had what he described as the worst season of his career - characterised by frosty relationships between Mourinho and some of his key players, unnecessary mind games with opponent coaches, woeful losses to weaker teams in La Liga which ultimately killed Madrid's dream of retaining the league title.
To cap it up, Mourinho's Madrid lost to Atletico Madrid in the final of the Copa del Rey - condemning Los Blancos to a trophy-less season.
The Portuguese coach left Madrid for Chelsea this year and has not had a very smooth start to his second stint at the helm, playing a tactical formation without an identifiable striker against United and his side losing to Everton last weekend.
The former Inter boss doesn't really look as special as he was in his heyday anymore particularly in his tactical approach to games which became visible during the tale end of his managerial career at Real.
His decision as Chelsea manager to drop Juan Mata to the bench as well as that of loaning in-form Victor Moses to Liverpool makes Mourinho look like a manager running out of ideas even before the league gets heated.
However Mourinho still retains his special ability to motivate his players to give their best on the pitch. It is yet to be seen if that will transform into a successful season for Chelsea.
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