Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is asking to be sacked
So Chelsea may be about to sack their celebrated manager Jose Mourinho and his ridiculous behaviour over the last few weeks suggests that is precisely what this complex and divisive figure wants.
Just 80 short days after he signed a new four-year-contract worth a reported £30m, reports suggest Mourinho will be fired as Chelsea boss if his side lose again against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge next Saturday.
With Chelsea sitting in 15th place in the Premier League after their FIFTH defeat of the season at West Ham on Saturday, the blip that became a crisis is now threatening to overwhelm the leader of the Blues ship. He may just have used up his last life.
How has it come to this for the most celebrated manager of the modern era, so soon after he led Chelsea to the Premier League title?
Well, Mourinho has a habit of hitting his own self-destruct button and in the last few weeks, he has cracked in a fashion that suggests his explosive personality may be unsuitable for a top office.
If your naughty child had behaved like Mourinho over the last few weeks, there is every chance that he would have been expelled from school by now, with a series of outbursts that have highlighted the inner demons bursting out of this complex character.
Now, entirely due to his own indiscretions, his own neck is firmly on the block, with sliding results on the pitch just part of the reason why Chelsea may be looking for a new manager sooner rather than later.
Hardly breaking news, but the suggestion is that Jose Mourinho will be sacked by Chelsea if they lose against Liverpool next weekend #CFC— Kevin Palmer (@kpsundayworld) October 25, 2015
Displaying persistent petulance, immaturity and downright rudeness from the moment he returned to work last June, it is hard to know why Mourinho feels the need to behave in a manner that is not befitting a man of his status.
This is the coach who was the king of English football as he danced around the Stamford Bridge pitch with the Premier League trophy a few months ago, yet all the good will he built up as he returned to the winners’ circle has been doused by his own stupidity.
We should not be surprised, of course we shouldn’t.
As he has proved in his spells with FC Porto, his first stint at Chelsea and during his time with Inter Milan and Real Madrid, Mourinho is addicted to confrontation with anyone and everyone.
Yet he has excelled himself in this regard since August this season, with this 52-year-old serial winner seemingly determined to push the boundaries of the game's disciplinary rules and pour shame on his club in the process.
Why else would Mourinho continually criticise referees, pick fights with his own players and staff, antagonise rival managers with pointless snipes and lose focus on his job at a time when his team have collapsed around him?
It is a chain of events that means his position is close to being untenable, which is a remarkable statement just ten games into his side’s defence of the Premier League title.
In so many ways, this is a tragic story as it doesn’t need to be like this for one of the most compelling characters the game has produced in recent years.
Here is the manager whose winning habit has long since ensure that he is established as one of the all-time greats of coaching, yet he remains condemned as an outsider who will not be granted access to the game’s inner circle.
While Mourinho likes to suggest he doesn’t care what the watching world thinks about him, we all know that isn’t true.
Everyone strives to be admired for the work they do and Chelsea’s leader struggles to cope with the reality that he may never win that acclaim.
None of us were surprised when Mourinho admitted he didn't have any friends in the game earlier this week because one of football’s great success stories of the modern game has long since ensured that he is a pariah within a sport he has dominated for the last decade.
Sherwood gone at Villa . Mourinho situation very quiet I think he is angling for the sack. Perhaps he knows Roman has Guardiola lined up— Lord Sugar (@Lord_Sugar) October 25, 2015
Mourinho only has himself to blame for his loneliness, as there are only so many times you can shovel your verbal crap on all around you and still expect to have some respect at the end of it.
Football Association fines and bemused glances from those of us watching this Mourinho car crash unfold have replaced the admiration we expressed towards him earlier this year because like any persistent offender, the novelty wears off when a bad boy continues to play the fool.
Mourinho has been like a man possessed as he has suggested the FA and match officials are out to get him and his campaign against Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been especially unpleasant.
Evidently, Mourinho cannot cope with the idea that a coach who has won just two FA Cups in the last decade has more gravitas within the game than he commands, despite his lavish success all over Europe.
However, respect is not only earned with success on the field.
Wenger is admired within the game as much for the way he has represented his club with dignity during his 19 years as Gunners boss, with Mourinho’s aggressive, petty snipes in the Frenchman’s direction as pointless as they have been embarrassing.
What happens next is very much in Mourinho’s hands, with his drive to get Chelsea back to winning ways needing to be coupled with a fresh attitude if he is to win over his increasingly sceptical audience.
After a decade and more of relentless winning this coaching genius has been coming to terms with what it feels like to be a loser in recent weeks and clearly, he can’t deal with it.
“Everyone is entitled to one bad season,” declared Mourinho last week and if anyone should be given a chance to rediscover a winning formula, it is this giant of the game.
Yet the trouble associated with this manager is not restricted to sporting matters and that may be why the ground could shift very quickly under his feet at Chelsea.
Removing Mourinho right now would cost the club a small fortune a they will do all they can to resist that pay-out.
That said, when an employer has a figurehead that is intent on pouring shame on his organisation in front of the watching world, you have to be concerned.
Abramovich ran out of patience with Mourinho’s desperation to invent confrontation towards the end of his first spell at Chelsea and now the script is repeating itself.
Those of us in the media are keen for Mourinho to stay because his dominating presence in the Premier League is good for business, but you wonder how much more of this Abramovich will take.
So long as the man in the eye of this self-inflicted storm continues to bring Chelsea Football Club into disrepute, his future as will be on the line.
REPORT OF A TROUBLE MAKER
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has faced a host of Football Association disrepute charges since his return to English football in the summer of 2013. Here is his crime sheet.
* He was hit with an £8,000 fine by the FA as he was sent to the stands by referee Anthony Taylor after he lost control of his emotions on the touchline in October 2013.
* Mourinho was fined £8,000 by the FA after he was sent off by referee Chris Foy following a game at Aston Villa in April 2014.
* The FA handed him a £10,000 fine after he sarcastically congratulates referee Mike Dean for his performance in his side’s home defeat against Sunderland at Stamford Bridge.
* In December of last year, Mourinho claimed that Premier League officials were waging ‘a campaign’ against Chelsea. The FA fined him £25,000 for that outburst.
* His opening day spat with club doctors Eva Carneiro and Jon Fearn (below) was a messy PR disaster created by Mourinho. Sexism may not have been at the root of his gripe, but he handled the battle horribly. The FA opted not to press charges regarding this incident after an enquiry.
* He is fine £50,000 and given a suspended one-match stadium ban for suggesting referees are ‘afraid’ to give Chelsea big decisions.
NEXT CHELSEA MANAGER ODDS
Pep Guardiola 5/2
Carlo Ancelotti 7/1
Diego Simeone 7/1
John Terry 14/1
Ronald Koeman 16/1