The Special One For Manchester United? Not for me


Regardless of what Sir Alex Ferguson has recently stated, there will come a time in the future where Manchester United will need to appoint a new manager, for the first time in over twenty five years.

Who should succeed Fergie has already brought plenty of debate/discussions in pubs, football forums and radio phone-in’s. Jose Mourinho seems a popular choice but some have their reservations. The man to replace Fergie will have to be mentally strong and have the personality to cope with the pressure of succeeding the greatest manager the football world has seen.

Jose Mourinho announced himself to the football world six years ago when his then Porto (the then reigning UEFA cup winners) team scored a late winner to knock United out at the last 16 stage of the Champions League. We all remember his celebration – charging down the touchline like a madman.

Since that night Mourinho has won virtually everything in the game.  Porto followed their victory over United by claiming their second Champions League/European Cup. With Chelsea, Mourinho won Chelsea their first league titles in fifty years.

At both Inter and Chelsea, Mourinho has had plenty of financial resources. Will Mourinho have the money to spend considering our current financial state… Could it be argued Mourinho requires money to be successful or does winning the Champions League with Porto disprove this theory?

Mourinho’s preferred style of play is a valid discussion point. We’ve been spoilt under Fergie in that we’ve played attractive attacking football whilst winning trophies. It would be fair to say; Mourinho prefers a more dogged, robotic and mechanical approach. However, the man gets results! Do we really want to be like Arsenal?  Play attractive football, receive endless plaudits but remain trophy less?

A point which slightly irks (well more than slightly), Mourinho likes to be centre of attention. Was his celebration in the victory against Barcelona more about Mourinho or defeating the current Champions League holders? Fergie is no shrinking violet in terms of knowing his own importance, but he realises Manchester United the club are bigger than any one individual. The English media absolutely love Mourinho (makes their job easier with his sound bites) so will no doubt receive an easier ride than a David Moyes.

If you want short term success Mourihno is your man. There is no doubting Mourinho’s credentials, he will win trophies at United. My worry is the lack of faith he places on youth set up system. Manchester United are famed for their youth development from the Busby Babes to Fergie’s Fledglings. How many youth players has Mourinho developed during his time as manager? I’m struggling to be honest. However, could it be argued he turned the likes of Frank Lampard, John Terry, Ricardo Carvalho and Deco into better players?

My initial thoughts were Mourinho mainly due to his personality (not for his style of play). In the last month I’ve shied away from idea. I’m now leaning towards David Moyes.

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  1. I heartily agree with everything you’ve said. Whilst I quite like Mourinho since he’s left Chelsea and would find it highly amusing if he joined us, I worry about his whole footballing philosophy. Moyes would probably be my first choice, although I wouldn’t rule out O’Neill or McLeish taking over. Or even an elder manager, someone like Lippi, Capello or Hodgson, with Solskjaer as assistant in order to blood him for the main job. He seems destined to take over at some point.

  2. I definitely used to agree with you but you forget that we have not really played exciting football (especially in big games) nor brought through lots of youth for quite a long time now so at least we may as well win! I would prefer someone that is more than winning but I am not sure who that is nor have any faith in Gill to know or attract that type of manager so can only see it being mourinho. Maybe at united with a crowd that demand attractive football he may do it more than at Chelsea where the crowd would not even know what good football was.

  3. I am not sure apart from Capello, Mourinho, Hiddink, Van Gaal, Lippi and maybe Rijkaard and Pellegrini, there are any other “strong” candidates for the United job. Most others will fall under potential category. Moyes,O’neill and Blanc would be safer choices. I don’t know if Guardiola is an exception, there would be only one way to find out. I don’t want Ole to try and fail, my theory was that he would know the future squad more than anyone coming in. He understands the United way of life and would be popular with the fans!

  4. well my chioce would be roy hughston the fulhanm manger got thenm to the ufea cup final. he gets the best out of players look at zomora score 3 goals last season this season scored 17 goals and 6 goals in europe and another excample danny murphy and duff. there careers were over he has change thenm to better players. fergie has even tipped him for manger of year. my second choice is mourhino but he wont conme for five years. roy will take for when he retries then mourhino will take over after winnging everthing at madrid come on liverpool

  5. Yeah well, i was classifying them as Bankers, Safe and Iffy…. The bankers would of course be Capello, Mourinho, Hiddink, Van Gaal and Lippi…

  6. Again, if we are looking for someone to be here the next decade, then most of the “bankers” are out except maybe for Rijkaard. If we are talking about a Moyes or Blanc then we can expect a longer tenure, performances notwithstanding.

  7. I agree with your assessment. Mourinho would seem an attractive choice, but there are a few things about him that convince me that we should go in another direction.
    a. Style of football – I believe Mourinho favours stronger, faster, more dynamic footballers rather than skillful ones. I believe that a mix of skillful players (Nani, Valencia, Obertan?) with dynamic ones (Fletcher, Hargreaves) is the right one. Mourinho had Robben at Chelsea, but didn’t know how to use him. Most of the attacks went through the middle (Lampard, Drogba), and hence, their extraordinary return of goals.
    b. I don’t think Mourinho would be interested in a single job for a long time. I see him being the boss for a maximum of 3 years, then making noises and trying to engineer a move elsewhere. He has always said he wishes to win the title in Spain as well as coach the national (Potuguese) side. Since Mourinho would prefer to do this when the odds are in his favour, I see him taking the national job sometime within the next 6 years (when Ronaldo, Nani are in their prime).
    c. There is no evidence at all that Mourinho values home grown talent. His answer has always been to buy, even if there isn’t a decent choice in the market (Hilario, anyone?). United has always had a proud tradition of youngsters making the grade. I fear that Mourinho might not bring anyone through, and, consequently, wreck the youth setup.

    I, personally, would like Sir Alex to promote Ole to be the first team coach, and then pass the reins to him (if he’s good enough), in about 3 years. By then, Giggs, Scholes, Neville etc., could be absorbed as coaches and provide a valuable support system, as well as retain the values of the club, as well as continue the legacy of Sir Alex.

  8. agree thimk ole could make it as a manger but i think fergie should het rid of phealn then give ole the number two jiob and we see how it gos from there. i watched the united relief match yesterday ole didnt play that great he had a few one and one chanse. yore still had good toches and andy cole as well. stanm look he was nevere awy .

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