The football world was stunned on Tuesday, May 4, 2021, when Italian Serie A club, Roma, announced the appointment of Portuguese tactician Jose Mourinho. According to the club’s statement, Mourinho would resume as the club’s coach in the 2021-2022 season.
Jose Mourinho’s appointment surprised most football fans because of how sudden the news came. Recall that Tottenham Hotspur sacked the Portuguese tactician on April 19, six days to the final of the Carabao Cup between Tottenham and Manchester City.
He was sacked just 17 months after his appointment and for the first time in his managerial career, he was sacked by a club without winning any title for the club.
One of the reasons Tottenham sacked Jose Mourinho was because of the performance of the club in the Premier League and the Europa League. The Portuguese coach failed to take Spurs beyond the round of 16 in the Europa League and also failed to maintain the momentum Spurs started the 2020-2021 league season with.
Recall that earlier in the season, Tottenham were looking like Premier League title contenders and suddenly, they started declining under Mourinho’s watch. He left the club when the club was sitting on the 7th spot on the league table.
In less than three weeks after he left Tottenham, he is going to Roma that have lost their glory in terms of winning titles, a huge similarity between them and Tottenham. The last time the club won a major title was in the 2007-2008 season when they won the Coppa Italia. Also, the club last won the Serie A title in the 2000-2001 season.
Last season, Roma finish their Serie A campaign on the 5th spot. They are currently sitting on the 7th spot on the league table with 55 points in 34 games, 14 points away from 4th placed AC Milan which means that Jose Mourinho would continue to coach a club that is not playing in the prestigious UEFA Champions League.
Why did Roma choose Jose Mourinho?
Roma gave Jose Mourinho a three-year contract which will commence in the 2021-2022 season. He will replace the outgoing coach of the club, Paulo Fonseca who is expected to leave at the end of the 2020-2021 season.
Since mid-2020 when American billionaire and businessman Dan Friedkin became the owner of Roma, he has been investing heavily in the club to return it to reckoning but the investment has not yielded much result.
The businessman wants to see the club in the top four again. He wants to ensure that the club starts winning titles again and the best man Friedkin feels can do the magic is Jose Mourinho who failed to perform such magic at Tottenham.
However, Jose Mourinho was successful when he had the chance to coach Inter Milan. The Portuguese tactician was so good that he helped inter to win two successive Serie A titles and did a treble including UEFA Champions League in his last season at the club.
Based on this, the ownership of Roma believes that the Portuguese tactician has enough experience and tactics to stop the club’s 12 years wait for a title.
The club statement read: “When Jose became available, we immediately jumped at the chance to speak with one of the greatest managers of all time,” Roma general manager Tiago Pinto said.
“We were blown away by Jose’s desire to win and his passion for the game: no matter how many trophies he has won, his primary focus is always on the next one. He possesses the knowledge, experience, and leadership to compete at all levels.
“We know that to build a successful sporting project it takes time, patience, and the right people in the right positions. We are supremely confident that Jose will be the perfect coach for our project, for both our immediate and long-term future.”
While Jose Mourinho said: “After meetings with the ownership and Tiago Pinto, I immediately understood the full extent of their ambitions for AS Roma,” Mourinho told the club’s website.
“It is the same ambition and drive that has always motivated me and together we want to build a winning project over the upcoming years.
“The incredible passion of the Roma fans convinced me to accept the job and I cannot wait to start next season.”
Meanwhile, Roma will play Manchester United in the second leg of the UEFA European League semi-final round at 20:00 on Thursday, May 6, 2021.
Recall that Manchester United won the first 6-2 at Old Trafford which means that Roma must beat Manchester United without conceding any goal at home before they can scale through to the final of the competition. Roma could need to beat Manchester United 5-0 to make it to the final.