While holding 3 fingers: “Do you know what this is? 3-0. But it also means three Premierships and I won more Premierships alone than the other 19 managers together.” This is the famous quote Jose Mourinho said to a reporter, when his United side lost 3-0 to Tottenham in the 2018 Premier League season.
Since the beginning of his illustrious career, Jose Mourinho has won over 20+ trophies, including two UEFA Champions Leagues with Porto and Inter. During that time, Tottenham have had over 12 managerial changes. They have won only one major trophy: The EFL cup in 2008.
Mourinho is a serial winner. Tottenham as of late are serial bottlers. So why should they sack him? Because of their poor run of form? Because the way the football being played is not the “Tottenham Way”? Mourinho in only his second season with Spurs has brought them to a cup final with the chance to finally win silverware for the first time in 13 years. Tottenham are also still in the Europa League, a competition Mourinho has never lost in his managerial career.
Two months ago, there was a potential title run Tottenham had when they were on top of the league table. So what happened? What caused this sudden dip in form where they have won just 1 game out of their last 6 premier league games? The real blame isn’t Mourinho; it is the incompetent defense this club has.
No offense, but you don’t win football games by having Eric Dier and Davinson Sanchez leading the backline. The constant amount of mistakes and errors they make every game is ridiculous, and they simply aren’t good enough to start for the club right now. Even during Spur’s “title charge”, the defense made constant mistakes, costing them valuable points in many games. The most notable one was when Spurs had a 3-0 lead against West Ham and unbelievably blew it when Manuel Lanzini scored a potential goal of the season screamer in the 94th minute of the game. You cannot blame Mourinho at all when his tactics come to waste by the defense blowing the game.
Now, many might say that it’s Mouriho’s fault for constantly using the two, but the problem is that nobody else could start over them. Toby Alderweireld is the best defender but he can’t start every game, and he also has declined. Japhet Tanganga is still inexperienced and shouldn’t be the leader of the defense this young group. Joe Rodon came from the championship and has the same point as Tanganga.
Mourinho failing to get the best out of his players is also not a problem. Heung Min Son and Harry Kane are both having the best season of their careers, having a combined 65 goal contribution in all comps. Having now an already impressive partnership, they are on pace to break Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba’s record of most goal combinations ever in the premier league (36).
Mourinho is trying his best to shape up the defense, but it seems impossible to fix. Every day, the Spurs’ Twitter tweeting the best center-back partnerships, and every day it’s a completely different set of players. Tottenham clearly does not have a consistent group of defenders that can lead the backline, and they badly need their Van Dijk. In hindsight, this all comes back to blaming the board.
Mourinho wanted Ruben Dias and Bruno Fernandes during the past transfer windows. Instead, he ended up with Joe Rodon from Swansea and Gedson Fernandes who played 14 games and left off to the Turkish league. This is similar when Tottenham had Mauricio Pochettino as their manager. He would be offered limited funds to buy the players he wants, and end up buying mediocre players that would start for Burnley. Then, they end up constantly recycling their players, and by the trends, Tottenham has finished worse every year in the league since 2017.
According to Transfermarkt, Spurs rank 15th in net spend between premier league clubs since 2015. Manchester City who for example, ranked first with a net spend of over 600 million pounds. That is 500 million more than Tottenham’s 100 million net spending in the past 5 years. That is terrible considering the fact that Tottenham is ranked 9th as the most valuable club in the world by Forbes. This makes you question the ambition that Daniel Levy, ENIC, and the rest of the board have.
Tottenham have failed Mauricio Pochettino, and they are slowly failing Jose Mourinho as well. Letting go of Mourinho and hiring someone like Julian Nagelsmann isn’t going to magically change the squad. It seems like everyone expected instant success, which is understandable if you are hiring Mourinho. What Spurs really needed was a deep rebuild to completely change the squad (except a few players like Son and Kane).
Something I think is true is that overall Mourinho and Tottenham weren’t a good mixture since the beginning. Mourinho’s tactics do not flow well with the squad, hence why if he is given the players he wants, he can succeed with the club and move forward. This is now an everlasting cycle where the manager isn’t backed and the overreliance on the same players halt the club from moving forward.
In conclusion, Jose Mourinho has won at least one trophy with every major club he has been to. If he gets sacked now, Spurs will be the first club where he wins nothing. If Mourinho has won over 25 trophies in his career, and Spurs have won only one during that time. Shouldn’t we know the real culprit for the club’s mess? The fans need patience and Mourinho needs his time for the rebuild. Give him a big summer window and then judge him. Until then, there is no improvement if you employ deadwood like Ben Davies, Harry Winks, and so on.