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World Cup 2022: Mourinho to enter international fray

The World Cup might be heading towards its climax right now with just  two proper games – one semi-final and the actual final – to play but, for a lot of nations the dissection of a failed campaign is already under way. As part of that, there are several nations – and several more likely to join them – on the lookout for a new manager as they build towards their next major tournament. That has seen Jose Mourinho’s name come up in conversation a couple of times. Here we look at what the future could hold for The Special One.

Where is Jose Mourinho now?

To any football fan that hasn’t been under a rock for 20 years, Jose Mourinho needs no introduction. He’s a media magnet, a serial winner and boasts a honours list that can stand up with the most decorated coaches in world football. His pedigree right now though is perhaps not at its peak. Mourinho left Tottenham, the only club with whom he hasn’t won silverware, back in April 2021. The Portuguese didn’t wait long for a route back into football though and soon penned a deal with Italian side AS Roma.


Mourinho took charge of the Giallorossi for the start of the 2021/22 season. He guided them to a sixth place finish and, more importantly, glory in the inaugural Europa Conference League. This year, things continue to go reasonably well for Mourinho and co. A charge at the Serie A title hasn’t been realistic during his time at the club but progress of performance and player mentality are two things most would agree on.

What nations want Mourinho?

As things stand right now, there are two countries who reportedly have Mourinho on their wish list.

The first is perhaps an obvious one – Portugal. Mourinho is Portuguese and massively proud of his heritage whilst he’s often floated the idea of taking on the national team job throughout his career. The other big plus with Portugal is that the players – both big and small – would worship him after what he’s done for football in Portugal. His more conservative style of football, which is sometimes a little lazy way of labelling his sides, wouldn’t bother fans too much either. For one thing, they’re besotted with Mourinho. For another, they’ve hardly been treated to free flowing, expansive football under Fernando Santos.

The other managerial link that has come up is a little more left field as Brazil legend Ronaldo Nazario, who would have briefly worked with Mourinho at Barcelona back in mid-nineties, backed the Special One to take the hot seat of his beloved Brazil. That role has become available with Tite leaving after the South Americans suffered a surprise exit from Qatar 2022 at the hands of Croatia.

On top of that, there are also doubts about the long term security of Gareth Southgate as England manager. Most bookies have Jose Mourinho in the running to replace him too. That seems unlikely though. Mourinho has – or at least can have – a spiky personality; that wouldn’t sit well with the English FA. It wouldn’t, however, be nearly as much of a problem in the Brazilian set up.

Would Mourinho go for an international job?

In the past, Mourinho has stated that he’d be open to a move into international management whilst there was massive talk of such a move unfolding in the immediate aftermath of Mourinho leaving Tottenham and Manchester United. Presumably, Mourinho would still like to dip his toes into that water before calling time on his career. Timing though is likely to be a huge part of that with a return to club football unlikely should he take the plunge.

Right now, Mourinho is worshipped by Roma fans and is reaffirming his position as the ultimate winner. If he stays in Italy with Roma could he guide them to a Scudetto? That would be huge. One way that might happen is with the Portugal job; it has been reported that the hierarchy are so desperate to land Mourinho that a dual-role could be created where he can continue to manage at club level whilst also running the Portuguese ship.

Could it happen? It’s certainly not impossible. What we do know, is that if anyone can deliver on that front then it is probably Jose Mourinho.

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