Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Jose Mourinho answers call of destiny to complete Chelsea job

FILE - JUNE 02, 2013:  Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. VALENCIA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 25:  Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid looks on before the La Liga match between Levante UD and Real Madrid at Ciutat de Valencia on September 25, 2010 in Valencia, Spain. The match ended in a 0-0 draw.  (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. VALENCIA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 25: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid looks on before the La Liga match between Levante UD and Real Madrid at Ciutat de Valencia on September 25, 2010 in Valencia, Spain. The match ended in a 0-0 draw. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. OXFORD, ENGLAND - JULY 17: Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho looks on during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Oxford United and Chelsea at the Kassam Stadium on July 17, 2004 in Oxford, England. (Photo by Ben Radford/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - MAY 07: (L-R) Frank Lampard, Jose Mourinho, John Terry and Paulo Ferreira hold the trophy after receiving the Barclays Premiership Trophy at Stamford Bridge on May 7, 2005 in London, England. (Photo by Ben Radford/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - MARCH 8: Frank Lampard and Jose Mourinho of Chelsea celebrate victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League, First Knockout Round, Second Leg match between Chelsea and Barcelona at Stamford Bridge on March 8, 2005 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 26: Jose Mourinho of Chelsea during the Carling Cup Semi Final Second Leg match between Manchester United and Chelsea at Old Trafford on January 26, 2005 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - AUGUST 24: Manager of Chelsea, Jose Mourinho, (L) with Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich (C) before the Barclays Premiership match between Crystal Palace and Chelsea at Selhurst Park on August 24, 2004 in London. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - AUGUST 24: Manager of Chelsea, Jose Mourinho, (L) talks with Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich before the Barclays Premiership match between Crystal Palace and Chelsea at Selhurst Park on August 24, 2004 in London. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - JUNE 2: Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho poses for photographs after the Chelsea press conference at Stamford Bridge on June 2, 2004 in London. (Photo by Ben Radford/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. 28 Sep 2000: Portrait of Jose Mourinho the Benfica Coach during the UEFA Cup first round second leg match against Halmstads at the Stadium of Light, in Lisbon, Portugal. The match ended in a 2-2 draw. \ Photo taken by Nuno Correia \ Mandatory Credit: Allsport UK /Allsport
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. DORTMUND, GERMANY - APRIL 24: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid gestures to the fourth official during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid at Signal Iduna Park on April 24, 2013 in Dortmund, Germany. (Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 14: Chelsea fans hold up a banner prior to the FA Cup with Budweiser Semi Final match between Chelsea and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium on April 14, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 13: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid looks on during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 first leg match between Real Madrid and Manchester United at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on February 13, 2013 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 30: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid reacts during the la Liga match between Real Madrid CF and RC Deportivo La Coruna at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium on September 30, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 13: Real Madrid CF head coach Jose Mourinho (C) celebrates the La Liga title with Cristiano Ronaldo (R) after the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and RCD Mallorca at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 13, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MARCH 04: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid reacts during the la Liga match between Real Madrid and Espanyol at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on March 4, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 12: Cristiano Ronaldo (L) of Real Madrid celebrates scoring his sides second goial with head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid during the la Liga match between Real Madrid and Levante at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on February 12, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LEICESTER, ENGLAND - JULY 30: Jose Mourinho, manager of Real Madrid gives out instructions during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Leicester City and Real Madrid at The King Power Stadium on July 30, 2011 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 30: Jose Mourinho, coach of Real Madrid looks on before the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Real Zaragoza at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 30, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27: Jose Mourinho the coach of Real Madrid gives a thumbs up to the assistant referee as he is sent off to the stands during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final first leg match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 27, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. VALENCIA, BARCELONA - APRIL 20: Head Coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid looks on before the Copa del Rey final match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Mestalla on April 20, 2011 in Valencia, Spain. Real Madrid won 1-0. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. VALENCIA, BARCELONA - APRIL 20: Head Coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid celebrates after the Copa del Rey final match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Mestalla on April 20, 2011 in Valencia, Spain. Real Madrid won 1-0. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 16: Barcelona manager (L) Josep Guardiola shakes hands with head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid before the start of the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 16, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. BARCELONA, SPAIN - APRIL 06: A Barcelona fan with a cardboard mask of Real Madrid head coach Jose Mourinho follows the UEFA Champions League quarter final first leg match between Barcelona and Shakhtar Donetsk at the Camp Nou stadium on April 6, 2011 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MARCH 16: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid looks on before the start of the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg match between Real Madrid and Lyon at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on March 16, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 22: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Inter Milan celebrates his team's victory at the end of during the UEFA Champions League Final match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 22, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 22: Head coach Jose Mourinho (L) and president Massimo Moratti of Inter Milan celebrate their team's victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 22, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 22: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Inter Milan lifts the UEFA Champions League trophy following their team's victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 22, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 22: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Inter Milan celebrates his team's victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 22, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 22: Head coach Jose Mourinho (L) and Marco Materazzi of Inter Milan celebrate their team's victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Final match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 22, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 28: Ex-Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, now coach of Inter Milan gestures from the stand prior to the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Fulham at Stamford Bridge on December 28, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. BARCELONA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 24: Coach Jose Mourinho of Inter Milan follows his players during the UEFA Champions League group F match between FC Barcelona and Inter Milan at the Camp Nou Stadium on November 24, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain. Barcelona won the match 2-0. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. PALO ALTO, CA - JULY 19: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Inter Milan looks on against Club America during the World Football Challenge at Stanford Stadium on July 19, 2009 in Palo Alto, California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MILAN, ITALY - MARCH 15: Mario Balotelli receives instruction from Jose Mourinho of Inter during the Serie A match between Inter and Fiorentina at the Meazza Stadio on March 15, 2009 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by New Press/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. BIRMINGHAM, UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 02: Chelsea's manager Jose Mourinho during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Chelsea at Villa Park on September 2, 2007 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - MAY 19: Jose Mourinho manager of Chelsea lifts the FA Cup trophy as HRH Prince William gives Arjen Robben his medal following the FA Cup Final match sponsored by E.ON between Manchester United and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on May 19, 2007 in London, England. (Photo by Phil Cole/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. VALENCIA, SPAIN - APRIL 10: Jose Mourinho the Chelsea manager celebrates the second goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final 2nd leg match between Chelsea and Valencia at the Mestalla stadium on April 10, 2007 in Valencia, Spain. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. LONDON - MARCH 19: Jose Mourinho the Chelsea manager celebrates following his sides victory in the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON Quarter Final replay match between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea at White Hart Lane on March 19, 2007 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 14: Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho makes a phone call before boarding the team bus following his team's victory at the end of the Barclays Premiership match between Manchester City and Chelsea at The City of Manchester Stadium on March 14, 2007 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. CARDIFF, UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 25: Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho celebrates with the trophy following his team's victory at the end of the Carling Cup Final match between Chelsea and Arsenal at the Millennium Stadium on February 25, 2007 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
FILE - JUNE 02, 2013: Jose Mourinho has been confirmed as Chelsea FC manager, returning to the club for a second term in charge, having left the club in 2007. MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM - NOVEMBER 26: Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho winks prior to the Barclays Premiership match between Manchester United and Chelsea at Old Trafford on November 26, 2006 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
File photo dated 22/05/2005 of Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Chris Young/PA Wire
File photo dated 07/05/2005 of Jose Mourinho lifting the Barclays Premiership trophy. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Rebecca Naden/PA Wire
File photo dated 02/06/2004 of Jose Mourinho (right) with Chief Executive Peter Kenyon. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire
MADRID, SPAIN - JUNE 01: Real Madrid fans display a giant banner thanking head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid during his last La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and CA Osasuna at estadio Santiago Bernabeu on June 1, 2013 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
MADRID, SPAIN - JUNE 01: Head coach Jose Mourinho of Real Madrid CF says goodbye to the Real Madrid fans for the last time after the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and CA Osasuna at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on June 1, 2013 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
File photo dated 12/02/2013 of Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Adam Davy/PA Wire
File photo dated 26/11/2006 of Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire
File photo dated 01/05/2007 of Jose Mourinho (right) and Rafael Benitez (left). PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Gareth Copley/PA Wire
File photo dated 06/05/2007 of Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire
File photo 13/02/2013 of Real Madrid head coach Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Adam Davy/PA Wire
File photo dated 02/06/2004 of Jose Mourinho. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday June 3, 2013. Chelsea have confirmed Jose Mourinho as their new manager on a four-year contract. See PA story SOCCER Chelsea. Photo credit should read: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire

Who on earth does the Special One think he is kidding when he tells Chelsea TV that he has returned to his most important passion?

From time to time he has listed many of the contenders and naturally they now include Internazionale, whose players wept when he left them after winning the 2010 Champions League. He has also frequently referred to his reverence for Our Lady of Fatima.

Nor is there any doubt that the enduring affection of the Stamford Bridge fans has a special place in his feelings and maybe never more so than when he fought a tide of hostility at Real Madrid.

However, in the joyful ceremonials of his resurrection as Chelsea manager we should not for a moment forget that Jose Mourinho is living, swaggering proof that when you fall in love with yourself there is every chance it will prove a life-long romance.

We should also recognise that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, having been rebuffed by the likes of Pep Guardiola and Jürgen Klopp for the most impeccable of reasons, has made his best possible appointment.

Manchester United, having seen him not so long ago as the outstanding candidate to one day replace Sir Alex Ferguson, cooled swiftly when his defiance of Real's lofty view of itself was combined with behaviour outrageous even by his standards.

Yet Chelsea, of all clubs, are required to put aside such delicacies. Their treatment of front-rank managers has been without conscience since Mourinho was first undermined, then eased out of Stamford Bridge in 2007. The project handed to Andre Villas-Boas was a disaster comprised of worthy promises about long-term support which could never be sustained once he had lost the dressing room.

The appointment of Rafa Benitez was a convulsion never justified by his limited potential to have a dynamic effect on an ageing but still formidably talented squad.

So where did Abramovich go while weighed down by the suspicion that no manager, however strong his reputation, would ever prove immune from his whims?

He had to go to Mourinho. Why? Because he is the most remarkable winner of his generation of coaches, a truth which should not be lost in the fact that last season in Madrid he suffered his first season in the top flight without a significant trophy. It did not disguise the fact that he had challenged Barcelona, full on, and in the process stripped away the mythology that this was a team destined to dominate not only Spain but all of Europe for the foreseeable future.

It is also true that for all the discord at the Bernabeu, the rebellion of a dressing room which contained figures hardly less self-regarding than Mourinho himself and the disdain of a hierarchy which has quite as much of the blood of coaches on its hands as Abramovich, he finished just one late goal short of guiding his team to the Champions League final.

Had he got there, who knows how his unique brand of psychological warfare might have worked against Bayern Munich?

We will never know that but we do know the consequences of a Mourinho victory at Wembley. He would have been the first coach to win the greatest prize in club football with three separate clubs.

As it is, he brings a huge charge of renewed confidence back to Stamford Bridge. It is the gift of a natural-born leader.

Frank Lampard describes him as a great, great manager and we can take it that this is not some starry-eyed tribute to his tactical brilliance. It is about his ability to take hold of a group of players and make them believe they can clear any obstacle in front of them. He did it at Porto with astonishing drive and authority. He did it at Chelsea until Abramovich set up his own counter-regime of men who were somewhat more pliable.

Mourinho has a four-year deal and, we have to assume, certain assurances about his scope to create a team more in his own image.

The midfield is impressively stocked by any calculation, but will Oscar, for all his brilliance, be a little too fragile for Mourinho's taste? If Eden Hazard's talent is evident enough, will he pass all of the new coach's vital efficiency tests?

There are many such questions but none of them touch on the central point that Mourinho has not come back to Chelsea to play the role of a yes man. It would be a self-defeating proposition, of no benefit to either the man or the club.

He has returned to fulfil a destiny that he has always believed was rudely, even ignorantly, disrupted. When he arrived that first time he said, memorably, that he saw himself as both the star and the director of a new and unforgettable movie. It is a brave man who bets that, second time around, he will not create a much more satisfactory ending.

Reaction: he always creates interest...

Arsène Wenger: "I have nothing against Mourinho. Overall I think he always creates a lot of interest in the media, especially in England but over the world. It creates interest in the Premier League and that is good."

Frank Lampard: "He took my game on a million miles, and my personality in terms of football on a million miles. A lot of the reasons I moved on in the game is because of him."

Ron Harris, Chelsea 1961-80: "I think 95 per cent of the Chelsea supporters are pleased. I think it's a pat on the back for Roman Abramovich for bringing him back."

Nathaniel Chalobah, @chalobah: "Just seen on the cfc website. Glad to have Mourinho back @chelseafc. Great news #cfc."

Ryan Bertrand, @ryanbertrand3: "This is what we've been waiting for! welcome back #mourinho excited for the new season already."

...but here's why it doesn't usually work

Kenny Dalglish (Liverpool): Nearly 20 years after dramatically quitting the Liverpool manager's job, the Scot returned to replace Roy Hodgson but lasted less than 17 months despite winning the Carling Cup and reaching the FA Cup final in his only full season.

Kevin Keegan (Newcastle United): Having been pipped for the Premier League title in his first spell at St James' Park, Keegan was enlisted again by owner Mike Ashley in January 2008. However, he was on his way just nine months later after growing unhappy with the way the club was run.

Howard Kendall (Everton): After leaving Everton in 1987 having won two league titles, an FA Cup and the European Cup-winners' Cup, Kendall was lured back from Manchester City in November 1990. He could not work his magic again and left just over two years later. A third spell in 1997-98 saw Everton involved in a bitter fight against relegation and though they stayed up on the final day of the season, Kendall had had enough.

Steve Coppell (Crystal Palace): Took Palace to the FA Cup final in 1990 and finished third in the top flight the following season. Never managed to match those achievements during three further spells in south London.

Harry Redknapp (Portsmouth): Left to join arch-rivals Southampton in December 2004 but, having taken them down, returned to Fratton Park a year later, saved Pompey from the drop and won the FA Cup in 2008.

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