Jose Mourinho displayed a full spectrum of emotions during his debut season as head coach of Roma.
The 59-year-old cried tears of joy as he celebrated his side’s Europa Conference League final triumph over Feyenoord last month. That success saw Mourinho land his first major trophy in five years – and it was clear to see what it meant to him.
Happiness, though, wasn’t a familiar emotion to Jose throughout the campaign. Roma eventually managed to sneak into a Europa League qualifying spot with a sixth-place finish in Serie A.
Throughout the second half of the season, Mourinho frequently took aim at both his own players and league officials in a series of furious rants as Roma’s form dipped.
The legendary Portuguese coach wasn’t afraid to get physically involved to help safeguard his team’s interests, either. Back in January, he stormed the pitch in order to stop striker Tammy Abraham from being sent-off against AC Milan after an on-field scuffle broke out.
Mourinho was back in the headlines a month later, this time having been shown a red card for a gesture suggesting that the referee was involved in match-fixing during a 2-2 home draw with Verona.
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For most managers, the above would be classed as outlandish conduct. For Jose, it’s simply become par for the course.
However, ‘The Special One’ did catch us off-guard during a pre-season friendly last summer, completely losing his head just weeks into his Roma tenure.
Pre-season fixtures are typically low-key affairs, designed to help the teams involved prepare for the campaign ahead by giving sides the opportunity to sharpen both their fitness and tactics.
Mourinho, though, has rarely done anything low-key in his career – and exploded with rage after a controversial refereeing decision went against his team during a friendly match with Real Betis.
Just before the hour mark of the game, Betis left-back Alex Moreno appeared to handle the ball into the net, giving his side a 3-2 advantage.
Naturally, in a friendly encounter, VAR technology wasn’t in use (mostly because the result has no real consequences) and the goal was allowed to stand.
The Roma team were appalled by the missed handball and swarmed the referee in protest. Their complaints eventually resulted in Lorenzo Pellegrini being dismissed. The Roma captain found the situation so ridiculous that he even sarcastically shook the official’s hand as he headed towards the sideline.
It may have been a friendly, but Jose was having absolutely none of what had just unfolded.
In incredible scenes, the Roma boss raced onto the pitch to confront the referee. A red card was soon flashed in Mourinho’s direction, not that it had much effect.
Jose was ushered away after being dismissed, but still continued to stalk the referee while making his point known in trademark fashion.
You can check out the bizarre scenes below.
Watch: Mourinho storms on to pitch as pre-season friendly descends into chaos
It's all kicked off at the Benito Villamarin! 👀— Premier Sports (@PremierSportsTV) August 7, 2021
A bizarre goal for Betis 🤪
Furious Roma complaints about it not being disallowed for hand ball 🤬
Red cards for Lorenzo Pellegrini AND Jose Mourinho (who was on the pitch) 🟥 pic.twitter.com/er5wnyzq7t
Order was eventually restored, but plenty more carnage was in store before the final whistle.
Fired up by the injustice that had just taken place, Gianluca Mancini and Rick Karsdorp also saw red as the Italian side finished the ‘friendly’ encounter with just eight players.
For good measure, one of Mourinho’s assistants was also banished from the touchline for his protests.
Life’s never dull with Jose around, although he’ll probably be hoping for a less eventful pre-season this summer.
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