In case you may have just emerged from a Rip Van Winkle-esque slumber, Everton has been a pretty big disappointment this season. Despite two nice cup runs, the Toffees have floundered in the league and Roberto Martinez may very well pay for it with his job by the time summer is here. If the Blues are serious about contending for the Champions League soon, there are few options to become their next gaffer that are as accomplished as Jose Mourinho.
Most recently, Mourinho went down in flames as the head man for Chelsea less than a season after leading them to the top of the Premier League mountain. This was the finale to his two-and-a-half year stint at Stamford Bridge. However, he also took charge of Chelsea from the beginning of the 2004-05 season through September of 2008. During that time, he returned the team to prominence, winning their first top flight title since 1955 in his first season and then followed it up with another title in the 2006-07 campaign.
Mourinho began his managerial career with Benfica in Portugal, but it didn't last long as he coached only nine league games between September and December of 2000 before leaving the club. From there, he stayed in the Primeira Liga with Uniao de Leiria, helping them to compete with the Portugese giants for the first half of the 2001-2002 season.
Then, "the special one" made the move of his career, becoming the manager of Porto in January 2002. In his first full season with Porto, he won both the domestic league and the Europa League. The following season he again won the Primeira Liga and this time topped it off with both the Super Cup and the Champions League. It was from here that he went to Chelsea (see above).
In between his periods at Chelsea, Mourinho spent time with Inter Milan (2008-2010) and Real Madrid (2010-2013), earning trophies in both places. With Milan, he won two more league titles, a domestic cup and another Champions League trophies. In Madrid, he dipped in form a tad, earning just one league title sandwiched between two second-place finishes.
If things are going to work on Mourinho's watch, you have to give him a lot of control. That means forking over tons of cash for the Portugese manager to go out and get the players he needs/wants to construct a European-worthy squad.
Just look at some of the names he has signed in the prime of their careers: Didier Drogba, Samuel Eto'o, Wesley Sneijder, Mesut Ozil, Angel Di Maria, Diego Costa. That sounds like a ton of money. The type of money that Everton, despite an influx of cash from new shareholder Farhad Moshiri, would seem unlikely, and probably unable, to spend.
That said, Mourinho did show an eye for more affordable talent with Porto, but that was more than a decade ago. He has not had to build a team like that in a long time. Instead, he has been able to rely on the open purses of some of footballs richest owners.
Mourinho's style of play is often thought of to be rather negative. Some may even call it boring, but you don't win as many trophies as Mourinho has without knowing what you are doing on the pitch.
His sides are always well-organized and, until this season, strong defensively while being deadly on the counter attack. The main idea with this style is to not lose, and you can't lose when you don't allow goals. But can easily win when you have talented players like Oscar and Eden Hazard on attack. So, in theory, the idea is simple. Allow the opponent to feel they are dominating by giving them a good share of possession, draw their line higher and higher and then unleash your goalscorer to ruin the opponent's day.
Everton seem like a side that could handle pulling off Mourinho's ideals. If they could somehow keep Romelu Lukaku in town, then they could pair him with Gerard Deulofeu to create the 1-2 punch on offense that would be needed. On defense, the Toffees have the veteran presence of Phil Jagielka, Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines to go with the younger John Stones and Ramiro Funes Mori. This could work, but it would be a complete 180 from the tactics that Martinez currently implements, which is an offense-first philosophy. The players have seen that Bobby's style is not working, so they could be quick to buy-in to a change.
Not very. If we are going on a scale of 1 (no way) to 10 (absolutely), I would give the chance of Mourinho coming to Everton a two. Of course there is some level of possibility to this. I mean, he has a pulse, the Toffees desperately need someone who inspires and show the players that the front office believes in them, and he would fit perfectly into Everton's feeling that they are always the underdog.
But let's be real. Mourinho is a man who wears out his welcome at a club within one to three years. Everton may need that long to even crack into the top four in the league, let alone be fielding a team that could realistically compete in Europe. Plus the club doesn't have the kind of money that Mourinho likes to throw around. And, as much as we love the Toffees, are they prestigious enough for Mourinho at this point in his career? Doubtful.
On top of this, there are some pretty strong rumors out there that indicate he has all but been given an office at Manchester United's training ground. That is the spot that makes the most sense for him. He would immediately be in a position to win a title and United is not afraid to throw cash at a problem to see if it fixes it.
Mourinho is a polarizing character, but no matter what you think of him, this would be an exciting move for Everton. And, as unlikely as it is to happen, it's always fun to dream of someone of Mourinho's ilk donning the Everton crest. The bookmakers reflect that uncertainty, giving 8/1 odds on this happening.