Apparently some sources are now indicating that Jose Mourinho will not only be leaving Real Madrid at the end of the season regardless of the outcome, but that he’s already shopping around potential Premier League gigs. Spurs and Liverpool may top that list, amid speculation that Harry Redknapp is eyeing Capello’s job and that Kenny Dalglish is not bringing Anfield the success it expects, despite a recent mood swing following their inspiring FA Cup win on Saturday.
Mourinho also reportedly cited the lack of support from fans and the confrontational relationship with some players (if only Ronaldo had smiled more) as reasons for seeking a new club. Some have suggested that it was resignation in realizing he’ll never be able to beat Barcelona in a league game, but at this point, sitting seven points clear, others have pointed out that besting their Catalan rivals is not necessary for Madrid to win La Liga in record-breaking fashion. Still, the Bernabéu faithful will not be happy until Los Blancos can jump this one final hurdle, regardless of the league table.
Imagine how difficult it must be to coach a team like Madrid. Your team can score 67 goals in 19 games, run the table in the first round of the Champions League, and do both with entertaining flair, and yet you still get criticized by fans and players alike. Granted, all high-level professional coaching jobs come with mountains of pressure, but he must be left wondering what more he can do (or could have done) to keep the wolves at bay.
As a Madrid fan, I understand the need to beat Barcelona, especially in league play, but I will still feel bad for Mourinho if he decides to leave because he wasn’t happy in la capital (although, its reputation precedes it; when traveling in the countryside, people would tell me that the “M” on the Madrileños’ license plates actually stood for mierda). I have questioned some of his decisions, as everyone has, but in the end he put the pieces in place to allow his players to play some exciting football. Even with Ronaldo, Madrid rarely resembled an all-star team, instead showing signs of a team that was truly gelling as the season wore on. One has to give credit to Mourinho on that count, at least.
If he must leave, which is sad, here’s to hoping he lands in any city but Manchester.