The Special One? How Jose Mourinho's star faded

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It's been nightmare after nightmare for Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford so far – so how did he end up like this, and far from being the 'Special One'?

When Jose Mourinho arrived on the scene in his first spell managing Chelsea, he was overflowing with confidence, calling himself the "Special One", and deservedly so – he had just lifted the Champions League with Porto and was about to have an enduring legacy at Stamford Bridge.

Over the years, however, Mourinho has slipped into a dark and desolate figure, cutting a Machiavellian character for himself and leaving a trail of destruction at clubs he's managed.

Success at clubs such as Chelsea and Inter have been followed by miserable and tormented end at Real Madrid and a horrific finish to his second stint at Stamford Bridge put his contributions to the club at stake. 

So how has his reputation dissolved since his years at Chelsea? Goal takes a look.

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    Chelsea, 2006-07 | Mourinho vs Abramovich & Shevchenko

    After two back-to-back Premier League victories with Chelsea in his first two seasons in charge, things turned pear-shaped for Mourinho during his third season at the club.

    He was involved in a pre-season spat with owner Roman Abromavich over the transfer of Andriy Shevchenko – a signing he was unhappy with – and was not pleased that he was urged to play the striker each game.

    Chelsea ended the season with the FA Cup and League Cup but finished six points behind winners Manchester United and were knocked out of the Champions Leagye by Liverpool in the semi-finals – and left the club just a few months into the next season.

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    Inter, 2009-10 | Winning the European Cup

    Mourinho became the first manager in history to lift the Champions League twice with two different clubs when he won it with Inter in 2010.

    A win in the final over Bayern Munich solidified Mourinho's star status as a manager, and it wasn't long before Real Madrid came calling – where it all truly started to unravel for the Portuguese coach.

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    Real Madrid, 2010-11 | Mourinho vs Guardiola

    Real Madrid are the club understood to have changed Mourinho for the worst, his time at the Bernabeu sprinkled with tensions amongst certain players in his dressing room and the start of a long-running rivalry with nemesis Pep Guardiola.

    The two were colleagues at Barcelona many moons ago but Guardiola's success at Camp Nou was Mourinhos' Goliath, starting from his very first El Clasico where he was thumped and stunned 5-0.

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    Real Madrid, 2010-11 | Mourinho vs Real Madrid & UEFA

    When Real Madrid were made to face Barcelona four times in a matter of 18 days at the end of the 2010-11 season in La Liga and the Champions League, Mourinho accused UEFA of having favouritism for the Catalan side that led him to be banned for five games.
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    Real Madrid, 2011-12 | Mourinho vs Vilanova

    Things for Mourinho escalated during Real Madrid's 2-3 loss to Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup, in which he vented his frustrations with the defeat by poking then-assistant manager Tito Vilanova in the eye.
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    Real Madrid, 2012-13 | Mourinho vs Casillas

    Despite winning La Liga in 2011-12 and yanking away Barcelona's tight grasp on the trophy, things started to fall apart for Mourinho the next season after friction with several key members of his squad, including captain Iker Casillas.

    His decision to drop Casillas divided the dressing room and drew criticism from fans, who regarded the former Spain international as the talisman of the club.

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    Real Madrid, 2012-13 | Mourinho vs Ronaldo & Benzema

    Mourinho also fell out with Cristiano Ronaldo in the 2012-13 season after criticising the Portugal international's over-confident nature, stating: "Maybe thinks that he knows everything and that the coach cannot improve him anymore."

    He also declared war on the Spanish media after critical comments and publicly took aim at striker Karim Benzema. When first-choice striker Gonzalo Higuain was injured, Mourinho said: "If I can't hunt with a dog, I will hunt with a cat."

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    Real Madrid, 2012-13 | Mourinho vs Atletico Madrid

    Things reached their boiling point when Mourinho was sent to the stands in the Copa del Rey loss to Atletico Madrid at the end of the season, with the coach decribing the campaign as "the worst of my career".

    Real Madrid ended up finishing 15 points behind Barcelona in La Liga and were knocked out of the semi-finals of the Champions League to Borussia Dortmund and lost the final to city rivals Atletico.

    Mourinho departed Real Madrid three days after the end of the season, to relief of both parties...

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    Chelsea, 2015-16 | Mourinho vs Carneiro

    After lifting the Premier League with Chelsea in his second season at the club, things began to unravel (again) during his third season at Stamford Bridge.

    On the first day of the season, Mourinho criticised team doctor Eva Carneiro for her treatment of Eden Hazard, who was in pain, during stoppage time, which led to a massive feud between the pair that led the physio to eventually leave the club.

    Mourinho's criticism of Carneiro was the start of another spectacular downward spiral at the club.

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    Chelsea, 2015-16 | Mourinho vs Chelsea

    As is the case with Mourinho, second-season joy is swiftly followed by miserable third seasons in charge.

    In his third season in charge of Chelsea, the Blues were were in dreadful form by December, registering nine losses from 16 games and languishing in 16th place. Mourinho was dismissed before the turn of the year, his legacy at Stamford Bridge tainted by a miserable third season.

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    Manchester United, 2016-17

    Mourinho's next adventure was managing Manchester United, taking over from Louis van Gaal.

    His first two seasons at Old Trafford were successful enough – a Carling Cup win and a Europa League win in his first season – though the silverware, arguably, distracted from the average nature of his squad.

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    Manchester United, 2017-18 | Mourinho & water bottle

    Mourinho could have decided to take on the United job after Guardiola took the reigns on the City job, or he could have not, but tensions bubbled over after Manchester United's loss to their local rivals at Old Trafford just before Christmas in the 2017-18 season.

    City had already hit the ground running in the league and would go on to break the record for most Premier League points won in a season, but when Guardiola's side won 2-1, drama unfolded infamously in post-match – with Mourinho having thrown a bottle in the direction of a Man City staffer, allegedly hitting assistant coach Mikel Arteta.

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    Manchester United, 2018-19 | Mourinho vs Woodward

    The summer of 2018 was nothing but disaster for Mourinho, who was involved in off-pitch friction with his club's directors after they failed to grant him a slew of targeted summer signings.

    The Portuguese coach was intent on invigorating his back-line by signing the likes of Harry Maguire from Leicester, and publicly lambasted the failings of his club's chief executives in a bizarre post-match interview.

    A disappointing pre-season in which he lamented a lack of first-team players (who were still enjoying a post-World Cup holiday) led him to criticise the young players he brought on tour, which may have signalled the start of the end of his time at Old Trafford.

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    Manchester United, 2018-19 | Mourinho vs Sanchez

    Manchester United swooped on signing disillusioned Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez in the winter of the 2017-18 and away from the hands of Manchester City, despite Pep Guardiola keen on signing the Chilean forward.

    Sanchez, however, has failed to replicate his form for Arsenal at Old Trafford and has been an underwhelming presence on the pitch this season, with Mourinho going as far as dropping him in the loss to 3-1 West Ham to further compound misery– a move that the 29 was incensed by.

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    Manchester United, 2018-19 | Mourinho vs Pogba

    Mourinho's relationship with French international Pogba has been rocky during the past two seasons. But it has grown even rockier now, with the manager telling the midfielder that he is never to captain Manchester United again following his criticism of the team's playing style.

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    Manchester United, 2018-19 | Mourinho vs third season

    Mourinho's third season at Old Trafford has gotten off to a miserable start already, registering three losses in their opening seven games (including a defeat to Tottenham Hotspur) as well as an early exit in the Carabao Cup at the hands of Championship side Derby County.

    A 3-1 loss away to West Ham and and 0-0 home draw to Valencia in the Champions League have raised further questions to Mourinho, and this current season could very well be the start of the end for the Portuguese coach – and the end of the legacy he worked so hard to build as a manager.