Jose Mourinho has been a little quiet over the summer.
Don’t worry, he’s just been taking a little time off to take stock of his career after being fired by Manchester United in December.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Sky Sports News, Mourinho has been relaxing in his hometown of Setubal in Portugal.
After some time as a pundit as he “learned what goes on on the other side of the camera” Mourinho says he is now ready to return to coaching. And he’s back with a bang.
“This is basically the first time I have time to think, the first time I am in Setubal at the end of July or beginning of August in more than 20 years,” Mourinho said. “I have some time to think, to rethink, to analyze and what I feel is exactly that ‘Ze’ (Mourinho’s nickname as a boy) is full of fire!
“My friends tell me ‘enjoy your time, enjoy your July, enjoy your August, enjoy what you never had’. Honestly, I can’t enjoy. I am not happy enough to enjoy. I miss my football, I have the fire, I have a compromise with myself, with people that love me, with so many fans that I have around the world, so many people that I inspired.”
“Ze has to be Ze and Ze until the last day, but I don’t see the last day because my next move will be like the start! I don’t feel it’s just one more year in accumulation of how many years I’ve worked, how many titles I’ve won. That is history, that is the museum. My future will start in my next move and, as I was saying, it looks a little bit ridiculous with so many beautiful things around me and so many things I didn’t [have] for so many years, but I can’t really enjoy my free time.”
Mourinho speaking about himself in the third person is pretty epic, and the fact he can’t relax in his picturesque surroundings says it all. He’s a football man, through and through. Whatever you think about Mourinho, he simply belongs in the game. That’s just the way it is.
A break will have, hopefully, done him good. That old fire he had needed to return because the grumpy, disinterested Mourinho we saw at United wasn’t the one we’d grown up to love and/or hate, but still admire.
Having a rejuvenated Mourinho in the game isn’t a bad thing at all, but it will be interesting to see where he ends up next.
As Real Madrid continue to struggle in preseason under Zinedine Zidane, maybe he is just waiting in the wings to have a second crack at being the king of the Santiago Bernabeu. He says he has turned down plenty of jobs since leaving United in order to focus on getting the correct position, and whether that pops up or not remains to be seen.
Offers from China and Portugal have come in, but Mourinho wants to work for a club that adores him.
“Why do I say ‘no’? I say ‘no’ because it’s not [at] the level of challenge that I want. But, with all respect to the possibilities I have had and the clubs involved, I want the right to choose the people who are ‘Mourinhista’ – like people say in Portugal, Spain and Italy – ‘Mourinhista’ is someone who is a fan,” Mourinho explained.
“The ‘Mourinhistas’ want me where I belong, so, for me now, it’s not a question of [saying], ‘okay I have this offer and I’m going to take it’. I have to be patient and wait for the right opportunity and the right opportunity is one that is at the same size and the same level that I am as a manager.”
The fire seems to be well and truly back inside Mourinho. Line up to make your offers. Mourinhistas…