Manchester United is still the most popular football club in the world, with a record of 750 million fans worldwide and also the biggest jersey deal in the world with German company Adidas, which is worth 750 million pounds over 10 years! Also, Manchester United has some big names in football for its players, which include players such as David De Gea, Zlatan Ibrahimović, Alexis Sanchez, Romelu Lukaku, Juan Mata, Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford. For a club so very popular and with a lot of success, it must take the likes of a very good manager to lead and direct the players of the club to winning titles almost every season. One of those very good managers is Jose Mourinho, who is the current manager of Manchester United.
Why Jose Mourinho was Hired by Man United
It was near the end of the 2015/2016 premier league season that rumours started spreading that Jose Mourinho will become the new manager of Manchester United. The rumours came about due to the disappointing performance of the club at the time under the management of the Dutch manager Luis Van Gaal, who had taken the reins of being the manager of Manchester United in 2014. Van Gaal had some skillful players on the team but was failing to inspire them the way the club owners and the fans would have wanted so that the team would be winning titles.
In the first season of Van Gaal’s reign as manager, Manchester United finished fourth, which caused them to play against Club Brugge FC for a play-off spot to qualify for the Champion’s League.
However, in the second season, which was 2015/2016, Manchester United found themselves slumping and performing very badly in the premier league and ended up finishing fifth on 66 points, which resulted in team failing to qualify for the Champion’s League and having to play in the Europa League, which is a league less than the Champion’s League. Even though Manchester United did win the FA Cup in the same year to give the club its 12th title, Luis Van Gaal was sacked (fired) from his job. After the sacking, Jose Mourinho was hired to be the new Manager.
The club owners and fans had mixed feelings because the team found itself playing in a league (Europa league) that was inferior to the Champions League. The Champions League is considered the niche for top flight clubs like Manchester United and Real Madrid. So, the firing of Luis Van Gaal was expected, despite his contract was not up and he had one the FA cup title.
Jose Mourinho’s call to duty
Jose Mourinho is one of the greatest and well-known football club managers in the world. He was very successful at Chelsea, another top flight English Premier League club and he was also the manager of Real Madrid, the most successful La Liga club. When Jose moved to Chelsea he guided the club to its first EPL victory in 50 years, finishing with a record of 95 points and winning the league cup. He then guided the club to retain the EPL title in the next season.
In 2006-2007 season he guided the club to earning a FA cup and League Cup double. However, he left the club due to a rift with the club owner Roman Abramovich.
When Mourinho started coaching Real Madrid in 2010 he won the Copa del Rey (a competition put on for Spanish football clubs) in his first season. He then won the La Liga the year afterwards. Jose returned to coach Chelsea in 2013 and during his tenure, he won the League Championship, and led the club to winning the EPL in 2015 on 87 points.
However, he was sacked on December 17, 2015 due to a poor run of performances by the club, which caused them to finish just outside of the relegation zone.
Nevertheless, the Portuguese coach was now a free agent and so, after months without a job, he was given the job to be Manchester United’s Manager on May 27, 2016 after they had fired Luis Van Gaal.
He was given the job to guide Manchester United Club back to winning ways and hopefully to start winning the EPL title again as well as other trophies.
Currently, there is a book written about Jose Mourinho’s success as a football coach, with special focus on his appointment as coach of Manchester United. The coach, who is usually called the “Special One” is at the front cover of this book. You can get a copy of this book on Amazon.com The book is called:
Jose’s First Season at Man United
In his first season as Manchester United’s Manager, Jose Mourinho won three trophies with Manchester United. The first was the FA community shield, which was at the start of the 2016-2017 season. The club beat the EPL champions at the time, Leicester City, 2-1. In February 2017, Manchester United got their second trophy of the 2016-2017 campaign beating Southampton 3-2 in the EFL Cup final. However, the club’s performance in the Premier League (EPL) was not good- they finished sixth, which caused them to not qualify for the 2017-2018 Champions League, not even a play-off spot.
Anyways, the club qualified for the 2017-2018 Champions league thanks to Jose inspiring his players to win the 2016-2017 Europa league final 2-0 over Ajax. The winners of the Europa League will automatically qualify or get a place in the upcoming season of the Champions League.
In the 2016 summer Manchester signed the France International Midfielder Paul Pogba for a record of 89 million pounds and in the 2017 summer signed striker Romelu Lukaku from Chelsea for a whopping 90 million pounds. In January 2018, Mourinho signed Alexis Sanchez in swap deal for Henrihk Mkhitaryan with Arsenal.
How is Man United performing now?
Jose Mourinho has now led his team, or should I say squad of men through the Champions league, the Championship cup, the FA cup and the EPL. Currently, the Manchester United team is positioned at 2nd in the EPL table, 16 points behind leaders Manchester City, 4 points ahead of 3rd place Tottenham and 5 points ahead of bitter rivals Liverpool who are now in fourth position. This current result comes after 30 games, with eight remaining in the premier league. This is a better position for Man United than last season because they finished sixth in the premier league last year.
However, in terms of trophies, Manchester United currently has none, compared to last year this time they had already secured two. The club is still able to win the FA cup title.
Performance in the 2017/2018 Champions League
In the group stage of the Champions League, Manchester United finished at the top of the group on 15 points after 6 games, winning 5 and losing only 1 game, which was very good. However, the team failed to do well against Sevilla in the round of 16- drawing the first leg 0-0 and lost the second leg, in a disappointing performance at Old Trafford, 2-1. The team came under much scrutiny, and the club manager, in one of his statements, after the match said that he should be blamed and not the players. Here, Jose is taking the blame for the team’s substandard performance, which was a responsible thing to do.
Players brought to tears in dressing room
It has been reported that Jose told his players, who were in tears in the dressing room, after the 2-1 defeat by Sevilla that he would take the harsh criticism that the team should get for the disappointing result. It was reported that some members of the squad were so devastated that they were in tears. I could just imagine how badly they felt after they had high spirits that they could win the game in front of their home crowd, who had booed them off the pitch due to the very bad performance.
On the other hand, Jose was being criticized by Manchester United legends such as Rio Ferdinand and Paul Scholes for not delivering the quarterfinal qualification that was expected by the United board.
Well, life goes on… Man United still has the FA cup title to compete for.
Manchester United is still doing well
Despite dropping out of the Champions League, which has resulted in some persons questioning whether Jose Mourinho is the right man for the job, the Man United players are still in 2nd place in the premier league and still in position to win the FA cup title. It is still very possible to finish second in the EPL this season and earn an automatic spot for the 2018/2019 Champions league.
Providing that Man United wins the FA cup, they will be playing against the EPL winners in August for the FA Community Shield, which is another trophy. So, all is not lost.
In one of his responses to the critics about him being fit as Man United’s manager, Jose commented that he needs more players and has indicated that he wants to buy about 5 players in the summer transfer window.
He has also indicated that he will not sell the goal keeper, David de Gea.
Jose shows faith in his players
Currently, Paul Pogba is not doing as well as expected of him, but Jose Mourinho still shows faith in him. Jose also shows that he has faith in: McTominay, Matic, Lingard, Martial and Fellaini. He also speaks highly of Rashford and shows faith in Lukaku as well as Juan Mata. These are just some of the players that I have named, because I believe Jose has diverse levels of confidence in his players.
David de Gea is one player that I know he trusts very much because he is the best player on the team now because he has saved the team from losing a lot of matches with some spectacular saves.
Jose is a very good manager, and to be managing such a very talented team as Manchester United is no easy task. I believe he has done a respectable job so far, but there is room for improvement because of the great record that he has as well as the quality of the current players.
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