The rise and fall of Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho went from being an unknown soccer coach to one of the most famous overnight. He then spent many years at the top of the sport, only for his reputation to fall once more. Mourinho was once the coach all teams aspired to hire, but now he’s seen as anything but. This is the rise and fall of the polarizing soccer coach, Jose Mourinho.

Barcelona and Porto

Mourinho first came to the attention of soccer fans when he worked at Barcelona, under English manager Bobby Robson. He was acting largely as a translator for the English manager though he was also learning a lot about how to coach soccer. Mourinho worked his way up through the coaching ranks and eventually earned himself the chance at his first big job, in charge of Portuguese team Porto.

The manager was able to create an atmosphere within his dressing rooms of ‘us vs. them,’ and he made his players fight for him with everything they had. That mentality worked perfectly at Porto, and he was somehow able to win the Champions League with them in 2004. His first big clash against an iconic manager came in that run to the 2004 final, where he took on Sir Alex Ferguson of Manchester United and won.


After winning the Champions League, many teams wanted Mourinho as their manager. The Portuguese coach decided to take his services to Chelsea, in the Premier League to resume his battle with Sir Alex Ferguson. Mourinho announced himself as the Special One and didn’t take long in proving it either.

He was helped by taking charge of Chelsea, who were willing to go out and buy whatever player the manager wanted, no matter the cost. After three successful years at Chelsea, things began to fall apart. Mourinho fell out with the owner and quickly left his position as the manager.

Performing miracles

Mourinho was able to leave Chelsea with his head held high after helping them win back to back Premier League titles. He walked into his next job at Inter Milan, who were seen as sleeping giants at the time. It was up to Mourinho to prove he had the skills to manage players who were seemingly not on the same level as some of their European counterparts. In two seasons with Inter Milan Jose Mourinho was able to win two more league titles and even another unlikely Champions League title.

Dealing with expectations

After his miraculous job with Inter Milan, Mourinho was brought to Real Madrid to help them return to the top of Spain’s La Liga. He won the league with Madrid but was unable to bring them the one title they really wanted, the Champions League. Mourinho left the biggest coaching job in soccer in 2013, but he wasn’t out of a job for long.

Fears that Mourinho was beginning to lose his magic touch didn’t last long as the coach returned to Chelsea and won the Premier League yet again. This was though, the beginning of the end for Mourinho’s reputation.


Mourinho became angry at press conferences all the time during his second spell in charge of Chelsea, and he was fired with the club in danger of being relegated. His reputation was still high though, and he was given the job of his old nemesis, Sir Alex Ferguson. Mourinho was in charge of Manchester United, but it was not a happy relationship.

He was never happy, and the team underperformed during his two years in charge. In 2018 Mourinho was fired as manager of Manchester United, and it seems few teams consider him to be the top coach he once was.

Mourinho was once at the top of the soccer tree and turned every team he was in charge of into winners. His methods always got results, but soccer moves on and no longer do players that he’s in charge of believe in the siege mentality that won him so much in the past.