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in fact I put that question out to all of you- the summer is done and we can't go back, but after the Leicester game, the one where he said the players "betrayed his work" (i.e. he did his job but they didn't do theirs [a theme of his from this season]) the club don't sack him. Then what happens? where do we finish? do we win any of the cups. perhaps we win the league? and in the summer what would happen?

 

 

I had kind of given up on this thread as it had taken such a bad turn and was akin to a school playground but it does seem to have got back on track slightly and I see no-one has answered your question G4. Perhaps that's because it's impossible to answer? All those Pro-Jose will obviously say he would have turned it around and possibly even won something (although even they would surely admit the PL was long-gone)? 

 

I am not anti-Jose but do honestly believe he was in melt-down and things were not going to improve. In December, I was seriously concerned that relegation could be a distinct possibility. We will never know but I have to agree with Sexyfootball in above post that I think it was for the best how things turned out and it really is time to draw a line under it and look to the future.

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The biggest difference for me is the return to full fitness of Diego Costa in that. He himself has said he wasn't in the required shape to start the season and started doing two-a-day sessions to get into shape.

His improvement is marked and it completely changed the way we played.

I agree that Costa has been the biggest difference. And that's almost entirely due to Guus replacing Jose. Guus has been like a voodoo hypnotist with Costa. It's fascinating from an academic perspective.

Your statement implies that if Jose had stayed, Costa would have been as good by virtue of his improving physical fitness. I highly doubt that. With any player at this level, physical fitness is necessary but not sufficient. It doesn't matter how physically fit you are, if you don't have the desire you won't get anywhere. With Costa it's especially so.

If Jose had stayed we might have seen a physically fit Costa, but I can't imagine we would have seen a goal scoring machine willing to fight through injury and exhaustion until the last minute of stoppage time every single game for months on end as if his life depended on it--even though the season was essentially gone already.

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The soul of the club resides from the fans no matter who walks in and out of this club.

 

That's the answer. I was waiting for it to come because of course it is. 

 

So who within the club reflects the fans? Who do you look at and say 'he's one of us'? Who was the guy who got what this club means to you and I?

 

You can give me any season from the early-90s onwards and I'll tell you the guy that I can say truthfully gets this club. Right now I can say that about JT.

 

When JT leaves, who can you say it about? 

 

I had kind of given up on this thread as it had taken such a bad turn and was akin to a school playground but it does seem to have got back on track slightly and I see no-one has answered your question G4. Perhaps that's because it's impossible to answer? All those Pro-Jose will obviously say he would have turned it around and possibly even won something (although even they would surely admit the PL was long-gone)? 

 

I am not anti-Jose but do honestly believe he was in melt-down and things were not going to improve. In December, I was seriously concerned that relegation could be a distinct possibility. We will never know but I have to agree with Sexyfootball in above post that I think it was for the best how things turned out and it really is time to draw a line under it and look to the future.

 

In my opinion we finish in mid-table, between 9th and 15th.

 

I think we go into the summer needing a top to bottom review of where we go from here and we recognise that we need to get the summer right and rejuvenate the squad, specifically focussing on the spine of the team.

 

So pretty much the same except Jose isn't here. Hopefully that makes the players happy enough to play for this club again because the money certainly isn't enough, the fans aren't enough and the badge isn't enough.

 

And if they don't like Conte they know exactly how to get rid of him. 

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I agree that Costa has been the biggest difference. And that's almost entirely due to Guus replacing Jose. Guus has been like a voodoo hypnotist with Costa. It's fascinating from an academic perspective.

Your statement implies that if Jose had stayed, Costa would have been as good by virtue of his improving physical fitness. I highly doubt that. With any player at this level, physical fitness is necessary but not sufficient. It doesn't matter how physically fit you are, if you don't have the desire you won't get anywhere. With Costa it's especially so.

If Jose had stayed we might have seen a physically fit Costa, but I can't imagine we would have seen a goal scoring machine willing to fight through injury and the exhaustion until the last minute of stoppage time every single game for months on end as if his life depended on it--when in fact the season was essentially gone already.

 

I completely disagree with this but I respect your opinion. I think his physical fitness limited what he could do on the pitch. He literally wasn't making the runs he was last season and that compacted the entire team because defences could press up on him. I also think that he was getting frustrated by this too. 

 

I remember people talking about how Jose wound Costa up, and the calming influence of Hiddink.

 

Do you agree with that? Do you think we'll see a calmer Costa against Aston Villa?

Edited by ShedEnder91
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I completely disagree with this but I respect your opinion. I think his physical fitness limited what he could do on the pitch. He literally wasn't making the runs he was last season and that compacted the entire team because defences could press up on him. I also think that he was getting frustrated by this too.

I remember people talking about how Jose wound Costa up, and the calming influence of Hiddink.

Do you agree with that? Do you think we'll see a calmer Costa against Aston Villa?

That's the heart of the problem, he was too wound up. The best performance doesn't happen when you're wound up. It happens when you're in a controlled state of stimulation. When I'm really wound up about something, I'm a mess and get nothing accomplished. Sometimes I'm doing a lot but not accomplishing anything. Other times I'm too wound up to even do anything. It's only when I calm down and take a deep breath that I can actually be productive.

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When JT leaves I will optimistically look towards Zouma, Traore, RLC and whatever inspiring additions Conte adds as the future of this club.

We haven't has this bad a season (well start) since before the 90s considering the relative size of the club so naturally some will feel lost.

Players come and go. Just because JT void leave it doesn't mean we cannot compete next season and beyond. I'm sure Conte will cope just fine .

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When JT leaves I will optimistically look towards Zouma, Traore, RLC and whatever inspiring additions Conte adds as the future of this club.

We haven't has this bad a season (well start) since before the 90s considering the relative size of the club so naturally some will feel lost.

Players come and go. Just because JT void leave it doesn't mean we cannot compete next season and beyond. I'm sure Conte will cope just fine .

 

Zouma. Traore. Loftus-Cheek.

 

3 players who likely won't start the first game of next season. I appreciate you answering but I think that the answer shows just how lacking we are. The fact that you didn't name the owner or any of his appointments is very telling too.

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The point I've been making when talking about soul, identity, philosophy, any of those words you'd care to use is that we've removed it piece by piece over the years and never given it time to renew itself. We've become a collection of quick fixes gaffa-taped together to try and find instant success and now that it's started to unravel we see there's nothing at the centre of it anymore. 

 

Now that doesn't mean Conte is doomed, but it does mean that the club needs to be honest about how it reached this point. That means a review from the very top down, looking at the very style of football we want to play, the people we hire, the way we develop talent, the way we acquire talent, the way we deal with agents etc.

 

And this is where this thread and our discussion comes into it because you seem to think Jose was the cause for this when it wasn't in my opinion. This was the inevitable conclusion of years of mismanagement and you can include the hiring of Jose as one of those mistakes because he was never the right coach to hire based on what we were doing before that. We were hellbent on hiring Guardiola and when we couldn't get him we didn't hire someone similar, we hired someone almost 180 degrees in the opposite direction of him.

 

And still Jose came in and did what you hire him for - he won a trophy. Then we stopped because we either didn't want him or because the board was too inept to do their job. In either instance the result is the same.

 

 

So what I think we need to do now is change the way we go about so many things but firstly you have to do what all successful businesses eventually realise - you let the talent lead the way. You put them in the best position to succeed and you get behind them. If that means Conte wants his own coaches, he gets his own coaches. If he wants a new Technical Director, he gets one. If he wants certain players, then you do your damnedest to get those players and no-one is guaranteed to stay.

 

We are a club without an identity, without a philosophy of football and we're hiring Conte because (and I hope this is true) he's the one we think can build a new one. 

 

So you let him.

 

You support him. 

 

You back him.

 

You don't go into this half-arsed because you think he might be gone in 18-24 months. From the moment he signs the contract, this is his baby to make in his own image. It's the end of the Jose-era after more than a decade. There's no going back to that and the last remnant of the pre-Abramovich may be gone as well, so we start again and we give him time.

 

There's been no more crucial a time in the last few decades for this club but there's also no greater an opportunity for a new guy to come in a truly define what this club is as we move into the new stadium (hopefully). It can be such a bright future but not without first acknowledging the mistakes of the past.

Edited by ShedEnder91
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I want JT at Chelsea next year because his still our best CB and is still one of the best in the PL. He knows he won't and can't play every game but he will be an essential part of the squad. His leadership on and off the pitch is second to none and while Chelsea are bringing in new players and hopefully giving youngsters a chance I think JT being there is a non brainer.

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I want JT at Chelsea next year because his still our best CB and is still one of the best in the PL. He knows he won't and can't play every game but he will be an essential part of the squad. His leadership on and off the pitch is second to none and while Chelsea are bringing in new players and hopefully giving youngsters a chance I think JT being there is a non brainer.

 

I want him here because I don't trust the club to adequately replace what he means to the supporters of this club. If they can actually put something on the pitch that the crowd will love, who will embody the passion that they have and demonstrate it every week then maybe we can move on.

 

But they haven't done that for a long time which is why I'd keep him here.

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I want him here because I don't trust the club to adequately replace what he means to the supporters of this club. If they can actually put something on the pitch that the crowd will love, who will embody the passion that they have and demonstrate it every week then maybe we can move on.

 

But they haven't done that for a long time which is why I'd keep him here.

What I am saying is I think his good enough as a player to not just be relied on with his connection with the fans.

To get what you want the board should of put measures in place years ago by not sacking managers left right and centre, every manager who comes to Chelsea knows if you don't get results within 6 months your sacked, so why would they take risks with youngsters who will have passion.

Chelsea is in a good position of actually giving some youngsters game time till the end of the season. Surely fans would love to see RLC bossing the midfield and getting a run of games. That will make fans excited and have more of a connection.

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Shedend let's say Conte doesn't have JT in his plans and like you doesn't trust the club so he comes to you and asks you who he should sign that will mean something to supporters of this club? Who is this player out there that is your shining light?

As for being mismanaged hiring and firing in the end it has worked out not to bad. As a result of sacking AVB we experienced the greatest night of our life with RDM and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Jose's return was not a mistake and the club listened to the fans. We all wanted him back and it was all good until the self destruction this season. If Jose gets credit rightfully for winning the league, he must take the blame for his bad start.

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I want him here because I don't trust the club to adequately replace what he means to the supporters of this club. If they can actually put something on the pitch that the crowd will love, who will embody the passion that they have and demonstrate it every week then maybe we can move on.

 

But they haven't done that for a long time which is why I'd keep him here.

 

Playing some decent football will go a long way to fixing the crowd ... I hope Conte's tactics include enough good stuff to get people out of their seats.

 

Jose was like a top Michelin-starred chef serving up beans on toast in a fabulous restaurant, and expecting rave reviews from his diners ... and then complaining when he doesn't get any ...

 

Play decent football and you win the crowd very easily. Sell all the players that inspire, and instruct what's left to defend first, and the place becomes like Highbury .... not easy to get excited about some Oscar tracking back and Willian aimlessly running about, vs a surging run from the back by David Luiz, a sublime flick to set up a chance from Juan Mata, a mazy pacey dribble from Arjen Robben. Mourinho would probably have left Zola on the bench because he was too small and didn't defend enough ...

 

If Conte turns up to play proper football then all will be well. If he sets up his team to get outpassed by Bournemouth then it will all end in tears ...

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The beautiful game..... I assume you're using that in the 'Arsenal fan since Wenger' sense, or maybe the Barcelona-appreciation society sense, where beauty is only found after 50 intricate passes. I'll concede that there is elegance to be found in those moments, but the actual phrase comes from somewhere else.

 

When H.E. Bates used that phrase first (contested but I like these particular roots) he talks about the 'gladiatorial rivalry' and diversity within the game. The beauty is found in the complexity of such a simple game in my opinion. It's the competition between two different styles or philosophies and an almost chess-like battle of strategies.

 

So it's absolutely possible for people to find the beauty in Jose's style of football. Arguably the most iconic moment in that most gladiatorial of sports, boxing, is Ali 'parking the bus' against Foreman for 8 rounds before countering his exhausted opponent and scoring one of the biggest wins in all of sport.

 

Similarly there is beauty in the way Jose won the Champions League with Inter, against the odds but nullifying his opponent's strengths and then exploiting their weaknesses.

 

Do you think you'll get different with Conte? An Italian, defence-first pragmatist? It may be a case of be careful what you wish for.

 

Good post. No I am not an Arsenal fan - wash your mouth out with soap please :)

 

Ali's bout against Foreman was one of the great sporting occasions. He set up his stall to try and win the only way he thought he could against a superior opponent, younger, faster, and with a heavier punch. But he didn't do it in every fight against lesser fighters ... he knocked them the f**k out .... No way would Ali have gone in the ring against someone he could beat easily and throw no punches ...

 

Bottom line - park the bus against Barcelona because that is the only way you can realistically win then fine, we all understand that.

 

Do it every week against PL teams far weaker than yours  ... well then you've lost the plot in my book ... especially when you don't even play a striker against the weakest Man United team in years ...

 

 

If Conte creates synergy with his squad, getting more than the sum of the parts out of the whole, then he will be a good manager. If he mis-manages the resources at his disposal then he will be as expendable as any other manager who got himself sacked ...

Edited by Sexyfootball
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I want him here because I don't trust the club to adequately replace what he means to the supporters of this club. If they can actually put something on the pitch that the crowd will love, who will embody the passion that they have and demonstrate it every week then maybe we can move on.

 

But they haven't done that for a long time which is why I'd keep him here.

although we may be about to lose JT, what other prem clubs have an equivalent? a player of such calibre that the soul of the club goes with him?

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In my opinion we finish in mid-table, between 9th and 15th.

 

I think we go into the summer needing a top to bottom review of where we go from here and we recognise that we need to get the summer right and rejuvenate the squad, specifically focussing on the spine of the team.

 

So pretty much the same except Jose isn't here. Hopefully that makes the players happy enough to play for this club again because the money certainly isn't enough, the fans aren't enough and the badge isn't enough.

 

And if they don't like Conte they know exactly how to get rid of him. 

 

fair play you've given it a go. I'll leave aside the stuff about the club needing to evaluate itself and have a good window as I think we can agree that is absolutely indisputable and even if we are in a period of success those things remain true. I'll also ignore (not out of impoliteness) the stuff about what is 'enough' for the players to play well because I think that is a tangent that is too wide ranging for us to pursue (here).

 

what I'd ask then is that given how stark things had got (in terms of results, attitude of the players, the attitude of and public criticisms from jose, player performances) how can you feel we'd do pretty much the same?

 

my reading is that the relationship between jose and the staff had gone far beyond the point where it would be repairable. I mean- we didn't once play three league games in a row without losing and since he left we've lost none. I think that points to the severity of the relationship breakdown. there was literally no improvement after the board gave him that vote of confidence so I struggle to see how, without anything changing, we'd suddenly change for the better? our form since he left is fourth best in the league (we're 15 points above the bottom 3) and our form with him had us 16th best in the league (1 point above the bottom 3). 

 

I think we'd have remained an absolute shambles and ultimately we'd only start to extricate ourselves from the relegation battle around now. to clarify I think jose is a great manager and he may well go to man united and win the league. but whoever is to blame, I don't think he was ever going to recover here without a near total (i.e. practically and financially impossible) overhaul of the playing staff (at least) and even then that would be no guarantee.

 

now if your reading IS NOT that there was a large breakdown of relationship, or that if there was it was only with one or two players, or that our issues stemmed from injuries to people like costa and courtois then while I would think this reading was informed by delusion or self deception I could understand you saying that we'd be roughly where we are now. but if you do accept that there was a large scale disconnect then as I say, how do you think things would change without things being changed?

 

I certainly don't think the relationship was broken by us not signing well enough nor do I think that if we kept jose and signed well in the summer that would make them happy with him (or quite possibly him with them).

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Last 3 posters .. .you think we played good football in the second half of last season and the first half of this season ? Did you enjoy the tactics and how the manager set up the team ? Bored me to death personally ...

 

Ok so we won two very good trophies last season ... fantastic ... very nice too ... but some of us like to see our team playing with a bit more style and flair rather than desperate defending and bus parking. I am a fan of the "beautiful game" concept, and I enjoy watching good football and player skills, rather than just the result and the tribal bragging rights that accompany "success".

 

 

Just a different point of view that's all ... no need to get personal and patronising. 

 

Spot on. Here here

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We all love Jose but he completely lost the plot During the First game at home to Swansea.

I noticed 4 things ...........that occurred that day ......,

A.) Jose did not show any joy at Oscar scoring in that game, Jose just sat on the bench straight faced with no emotion.

So he basically he chose to alienate Oscar.

B.) Jose then chose to alienate Hazard, because he thought Hazard was feigning injury, as he exploded well over the top, when the doctor went on at the request of the referee to treat hazard.

C.) Jose then during the post match interview on tv, he chose to make matters worse by arrogantly publically criticising the Chelsea team Doctors.

D.) The club made a mistake as they backed him up, instead they should have quietly called him in and asked him for a full explanation as to why he over reacted to his colleagues ( Chelsea club doctors) going on to treat hazard.

IMO .....that was the day he and the club lost the dressing room.

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We all love Jose but he completely lost the plot During the First game at home to Swansea.

I noticed 4 things ...........that occurred that day ......,

A.) Jose did not show any joy at Oscar scoring in that game, Jose just sat on the bench straight faced with no emotion.

So he basically he chose to alienate Oscar.

B.) Jose then chose to alienate Hazard, because he thought Hazard was feigning injury, as he exploded well over the top, when the doctor went on at the request of the referee to treat hazard.

C.) Jose then during the post match interview on tv, he chose to make matters worse by arrogantly publically criticising the Chelsea team Doctors.

D.) The club made a mistake as they backed him up, instead they should have quietly called him in and asked him for a full explanation as to why he over reacted to his colleagues ( Chelsea club doctors) going on to treat hazard.

IMO .....that was the day he and the club lost the dressing room.

 

On the 'A' part, why?

 

It all happened in the swans game, we played good football up until the red card, it's totally different to what we saw from the pre-season games.. Performance wise, the only problem were only ivanovic and unfit costa, sort that out, we'd probably talking about on how to retain our title from leicester in the final game of the season..

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The point I've been making when talking about soul, identity, philosophy, any of those words you'd care to use is that we've removed it piece by piece over the years and never given it time to renew itself. We've become a collection of quick fixes gaffa-taped together to try and find instant success and now that it's started to unravel we see there's nothing at the centre of it anymore. 

 

Now that doesn't mean Conte is doomed, but it does mean that the club needs to be honest about how it reached this point. That means a review from the very top down, looking at the very style of football we want to play, the people we hire, the way we develop talent, the way we acquire talent, the way we deal with agents etc.

 

And this is where this thread and our discussion comes into it because you seem to think Jose was the cause for this when it wasn't in my opinion. This was the inevitable conclusion of years of mismanagement and you can include the hiring of Jose as one of those mistakes because he was never the right coach to hire based on what we were doing before that. We were hellbent on hiring Guardiola and when we couldn't get him we didn't hire someone similar, we hired someone almost 180 degrees in the opposite direction of him.

 

And still Jose came in and did what you hire him for - he won a trophy. Then we stopped because we either didn't want him or because the board was too inept to do their job. In either instance the result is the same.

 

 

So what I think we need to do now is change the way we go about so many things but firstly you have to do what all successful businesses eventually realise - you let the talent lead the way. You put them in the best position to succeed and you get behind them. If that means Conte wants his own coaches, he gets his own coaches. If he wants a new Technical Director, he gets one. If he wants certain players, then you do your damnedest to get those players and no-one is guaranteed to stay.

 

We are a club without an identity, without a philosophy of football and we're hiring Conte because (and I hope this is true) he's the one we think can build a new one. 

 

So you let him.

 

You support him. 

 

You back him.

 

You don't go into this half-arsed because you think he might be gone in 18-24 months. From the moment he signs the contract, this is his baby to make in his own image. It's the end of the Jose-era after more than a decade. There's no going back to that and the last remnant of the pre-Abramovich may be gone as well, so we start again and we give him time.

 

There's been no more crucial a time in the last few decades for this club but there's also no greater an opportunity for a new guy to come in a truly define what this club is as we move into the new stadium (hopefully). It can be such a bright future but not without first acknowledging the mistakes of the past.

Great post Shedender.

Nothing more to say really. The only thing we do have in our favour is that so many other clubs have similarly eroded their identity and their souls. So perhaps we have some time to regroup

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Great post Shedender

Chelsea are a great club, with a great owner, but sadly there have been some big errors of judgement made by his entrusted leiutentants, during the past year or so, especially concerning their recruitment of some players, who are simply not good enough and the massive numbers of stock piled loaned out players who seemingly will never get a chance to show what they can do in the 1st team.

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