BREAKING: Reports: @ManUtd sack Louis van Gaal.
Updates on #SSNHQ
— Sky Sports News HQ (@SkySportsNewsHQ) May 23, 2016
And just like that Manchester United’s long season or bland, boring, and pragmatic football has come to an end. The two year Louis van Gaal era that left often left fans and players frustrated culminated with a victory in the FA Cup Final on Saturday, the club’s first trophy since Sir Alex Ferguson retired.
This is welcome news for many Manchester United fans who have often found their team unwatchable under Van Gaal this season. Following the victory in the FA Cup final there were many fans singing the name of Jose Mourinho down Wembley Way in celebration. And those fans got that wish when Mourinho was announced as Manchester United manager last Friday.
But then there’s that saying “be careful what you wish for,” a saying that certainly applies here. This is the same manager whose team quit on him earlier this season leading to him being sacked in December. He’s then spent the past six months begging for the Manchester United job because no other big club would hire him.
There were times last season where the songs coming from the stands at Old Trafford featured the lyrics, “We want to attack! We’re Manchester United, we want to attack.”
Now, many of the same fans who sang those songs about wanting United to play attacking football are ready to welcome in Jose Mourinho with open arms. Mourinho of course is a manager known far more for 1-0 victories than he is for playing the attacking football that Manchester United fans crave.
The next concern is foundation that Manchester United is built on and prides itself on. Their youth. This season United have seen the likes of Cameron Borthwick-Jackson and Timothy Fosu-Mensah graduate from the youth academy and play crucial first team minutes. They both proved they are ready for the Premier League.
And then of course there’s academy graduate Marcus Rashford. It’s safe to say United wouldn’t have even been sniffing the Champions League on the final day of the season without the heroics of Rashford over the past three months. Rashford made his debut back in February and was so good that after just three months in the first team the 18 year old was included in Roy Hodgson’s provisional squad for Euro 2016.
But now those same United fans who sang about attacking football, and sang about Rashford being one of their own are now welcoming in Jose Mourinho, a manager known for bringing in high priced veterans and rarely giving youth a chance.
Despite not even officially in charge of United yet, The Telegraph is already reporting that Mourinho plans to build his team around 34 year old free agent striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Right away if that happens where exactly does a budding star like Rashford fit?
On Sunday night ESPN football commentator Ian Darke tweeted the following.
Are Man Utd fans excited or depressed at thought of Mourinho and the Manchester media feeding frenzy? Can only be 3-year project with him
— Ian Darke (@IanDarke) May 22, 2016
The responses to his tween were simply astonishing.
@IanDarke it might just be time for Jose Mourihno to settle down and create a dynasty
— Mark Wallsworth (@mhw6160) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke excited. Why will it only be 3 years? Maybe he will fall in love with the club. He's been everywhere already maybe time to settle
— Ste (@steandclare) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke I think Jose is more than capable of being successful for more than three seasons at United.
— Aidan Reagh (@aidan_reagh) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke will be more like his first spell at Chelsea this time, unlimited resources.
— Eklim (@Ekz8) May 22, 2016
— Áhmēd Ŷ (@mcahmedy) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke why a 3 year project? Do other clubs he has managed have any relevance on the future or United. No
— Vinny (@VinnyGraeme) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke I think your following everyone else Ian I personally think he will be there longer
— jose mourinho mufc (@Broc1982) May 22, 2016
@IanDarke says who? He has to find a home at some point doesn't he? Even if not we will be much stronger having been under his stewardship
— David Shankland (@shankers73) May 22, 2016
History. That’s who says who. There’s another saying, “those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
Mourinho has never made it at a club more than three years. That’s not because he didn’t want to but simply because he hasn’t been able to stick around. Saying he “eventually” needs to settle down and find a home is far from the truth. Mourinho wanted to do that when he returned to Chelsea for the 2014/15 season, he even spoke of wanting to be at Stamford Bridge for the next 10 years and yet it took just over two years for his team to quit on him forcing him to be shown the door.
This past season was a very telling season in the Premier League. It showed us that with the new TV money the big boys of the Premier League are not competing just amongst themselves anymore, they’re now competing with everyone. This is a far different league from the one Mourinho dominated 11 years ago or even two years ago. There’s no guarantee that he’ll have the same success that he once has. It is however a pretty safe bet that he’ll leave the team in the same mayhem that he seems to leave every team he ever goes to.
Manchester United fans pride themselves on supporting a club that plays attacking football and develops from within. They’re now singing the name of a manager who does neither of those things.
Is it just me or does that not make any sense?