Mourinho wins league, Mourinho leaves Real Madrid.
In what probably counts as a busy news night, after essentially winning the league as Barcelona slipped 7 points behind Real Madrid, Jose Mourinho has decided to leave Real Madrid, and is bound for our own sceptr’d isle, according to Duncan Castles of the Sunday Times. (ATTENTION UNWASHED: The link is behind a paywall.)
It’s nice of The Great Man to let us all speculate on where he might end up. It’s definitely a Premier League club, so let’s have a quick look.
Manchester City – Appear to be happy with Mancini.
Liverpool – Difficult to see, difficult to displace Dalglish.
Arsenal – Much speculation that he’ll swap jobs with Wenger, which may not be as far-fetched as it sounds from one perspective, but it’s difficult to see Mourinho managing at Arsenal’s current level with seemingly little guarantee of financial backing.
Tottenham – Manager in, ahem, a spot of bother. But surely not big enough to attract Jose.
Chelsea – It’s difficult to see Abramovich admitting he made a mistake, though not difficult to imagine Jose returning, and making a swallowing of pride seem more like Napoleon’s return from Elba. Still wouldn’t put the family silver on it.
Which, as you’ll notice, leaves only one. Manchester United. Ferguson’s said that he’ll hang around for three more years at least, although he also said he was going to retire ages ago. that Ben Foster would eventually replace Edwin Van Der Sar, and that Temple of Doom was the best Indiana Jones film. In other words, you can’t believe a word he says. He’s been cutting a strange path in the world lately, getting involved in fights he’s had no need to, ignoring people he would’ve previously taken to task, and it wouldn’t be too much of a surprise were he to decide that the time was right at the end of this season.
People forget, in thinking of Ferguson’s retirement, how much he thinks about his own legacy. A smooth transition period will be vital to that – Ferguson undoubtedly thinks Mourinho is the man to replace him, and if he thinks that the coronation will happen with little incident this year, that’s when he’ll pick.
And then you’d all better buy up some canned food, and hide in your cellar for the next thirty years. This won’t be pretty. Just sexy.