During his first press conference as Chelsea manager, the newly labelled “happy one” said that “expectations are higher” for his second stint in charge at Stamford Bridge. Well, you can say that again Jose. In fact, despite everything Mourinho has done for Chelsea, there are several reasons why he is going to be under extreme pressure and media scrutiny while in charge. This move has been widely predicted for quite a while, so the weight of expectation will be high.
His past Chelsea success
Arguably the biggest problem for ‘the Special One’ will be his track record with the club. He won six trophies in three seasons, including back-to-back Premier League titles in his first two. Failure to win silverware at the same pace will almost undoubtedly be portrayed as some kind of regression by the media. Chelsea fans will also remember the almost instantaneous revolution Mourinho brought the first time, and will be expecting a similarly quick turnaround in the club’s on-field performances and off-field mentality.
Success in his absence
Much has been made of Chelsea’s managerial carousel since Mourinho’s departure, but despite all the off-field controversies, there has still been success at Stamford Bridge. He is after all taking over a club that has won two European trophies in two years – he couldn’t win one in three seasons. The point is that Mourinho is hardly walking in to a place where the only way is up.
Mourinho will have a deep squad, stalwarts who he has worked with before, talented youngsters, and significant funds at his disposal. Basically, the resources for success are there –Jose is expected to be the man to combine them all successfully. Frank Lampard has been the most vocal in praising his boss, but many in the squad have fond memories of Mourinho, so expect the re-acclimatising period to be very short. Also, don’t be surprised if Roman Abramovich splashes out some outrageous sums of cash this summer to help his newest managerial investment. Bottom line – failure really shouldn’t be an option.
His own standards
This is Jose Mourinho after all. His cockiness, track record, and controversial nature mean he simply has to succeed. If he doesn’t, he becomes an easy target for both fans and the media – something he felt happened in Madrid. He will demand success, and take it very personally if it doesn’t arrive. Apart from which, think of all the unfinished business he has in West London. He didn’t win the Champions League, never won three trophies in a season, and couldn’t elevate the club to clearly dominate their main rival. While these are very difficult things to do, Mourinho has achieved all of them at other clubs, and one feels they are the only types of successes that will bring him true satisfaction.