Friday, 28 April 2017

In praise of the Special One

JOSE Mourinho is already a success at Manchester United, but don't tell that to some who want him to fail.

It's been strange to watch how the Special One has been covered this season, almost through a prism of him constantly being under pressure.

What did we expect? A league title in his first season? The Red Devils don't have the squad for that just now.

But at a trophy hungry club, Mourinho has already plonked the League Cup on the sideboard and realistically should add the Europa League to the cabinet by the end of May.

All the while keeping in touch in the league, a difficult task for English clubs who often struggle with the Thursday night to weekend turnaround required.

The draw with Manchester City on Thursday keeps United well in touch with a Liverpool side attempting  to treat triumph and disaster the same each week.

Yes they have drawn too many games but United have dominated many of those stalemates without reward. 

If just four of those games had ended in victory for Mourinho's men United would be joint second and four points off the top.

Of course he has spent a lot of money, but which Premier League manager isn't afraid of waiving the chequebook in a cash rich league? 

And the excuses and bizarre comments such as claiming Middlesbrough would beat them? Come on everyone, we are dealing with the master of deflecting attention here.

Remember Mourinho was the man who named Barcelona's team 24 hours before a game. The result? Everyone was talking about Jose the next day not the challenge awaiting Chelsea....

The spectre of Sir Alex still looms at Old Trafford at a club which went 26 years without a league title and arguably without the continued success the Govan guv'nor delivered.

A period of change was almost certain, but had Moyes or LVG put a trophy on the table in year one they would be there now.

Mourinho has brought himself time with the League Cup but knows the owners want Champions League football.

Should he achieve that then it will be a job well done in his first year. The expectation level will rise again at Old Trafford I am sure.

But if anyone can meet the challenge it's the Special One. 

By the way, any chance of a smile Jose?