Jose Mourinho goes into the Europa League final with a remarkable record when it comes to winning on the big occasion.
The Portuguese has won 11 of his 13 finals so far and, after failing in the Premier League, Manchester United fans will be hoping history repeats itself yet again against Ajax in Stockholm on Wednesday.
Starting at FC Porto, Mourinho’s first final was coincidentally in the Europa League, then called the UEFA Cup, against Celtic in the first game to use the ‘Silver Goal’ rule.
PORTO 3 CELTIC 2 (21/05/2003)
With the score tied at 2-2, the game was settled in extra-time following Derlei’s second goal of the match. The Silver Goal rule was no longer in effect when Derlei scored with five minutes of extra-time remaining to settle a classic final, which also saw both sides have a player sent off.
PORTO 1 LEIRIA 0 (15/06/2003)
Thanks to a second-half strike from Derlei, Porto completed the treble after already winning the Primeira Liga and UEFA Cup. Mourinho had enjoyed a magnificent first full season and was reaping the rewards for his unusual take to pre-season training when he published a full plan of what he intended to do. Results were positive and his new style of ‘high pressure’ football began to take Portugal by storm.
PORTO 1 BENFICA 2 (AET) (16/05/2004)
Three wasn’t the magic number for Mourinho as, despite a third successive final goal for Derlei, extra-time proved too much of a task for Porto. The fierce rivalry between the two clubs paved the way for a breathless final, with underdogs Benfica preventing Mourinho from completing a second successive clean sweep of Portuguese silverware.
PORTO 3 MONACO 0 (26/05/2004)
Mourinho’s first Champions League final with Porto precipitated his eventual move to Chelsea. In a game between two of the underdogs in the tournament, Porto overcame a slow start to the match and after going in front through Carlos Alberto's 39th minute goal, Mourinho’s side didn’t look back. Deco and substitute Dmitri Alenichev scored inside the final 20 minutes to seal Porto's triumph.
CHELSEA 3 LIVERPOOL 2 (27/02/2005)
The start of the ‘Special One’s’ English legacy saw his Chelsea side overcome Rafa Benitez’s Liverpool in a pulsating League Cup final. Mourinho was sent to the stands for taunting Liverpool supporters after a Steven Gerrard own goal levelled things. Chelsea scored twice in extra-time through Didier Drogba and Mateja Kezman to hand Mourinho his first trophy in England.
CHELSEA 2 ARSENAL 1 (25/02/2007)
Arsenal began the game in relentless fashion and their fast, high-tempo football caused Chelsea trouble, forcing Petr Cech into a string of early saves. When Theo Walcott put Arsenal ahead, it sparked Chelsea into life and, after Drogba equalised, the Ivory Coast International found the net again with six minutes to go. Two major stoppages in play threatened to overshadow the occasion when John Terry was knocked dangerously unconscious and a fracas broke out between the two sides.
CHELSEA 1 MAN UTD 0 (19/05/2007)
The first FA Cup final at the new Wembley failed to live up to pre-match expectations and was heading for a penalty shootout until a moment of magic from Drogba with just four minutes left. Mourinho had now secured the one domestic English trophy he was missing and on no better occasion could he achieve the feat.
INTER 1 ROMA 0 (05/05/2010)
A single goal from Diego Milito was enough for Mourinho's side to claim the first piece of silverware up for grabs in a repeat of the 2008 Coppa Italia. Just over a week later, Inter were crowned Serie A champions to complete the domestic double.
INTER 2 BAYERN MUNICH 0 (22/05/2010)
The first Champions League final not to feature an English club since Mourinho’s Porto swept aside Monaco in 2004 was controlled by German giants Bayern but ultimately ended with the Italians lifting the trophy. Mourinho employed a counter-attacking style and, after going ahead in the 35th minute courtesy of a Milito goal, the Italian champions held off their opponents before the Argentine striker scored a second goal with 20 minutes to go.
REAL MADRID 1 BARCELONA 0 (20/04/2011)
Winning his first trophy since arriving in Spain, Mourinho ended Real Madrid’s 18-year-long Copa Del Rey drought. Not only this, but it was also Real’s first trophy since winning La Liga in 2008 as Mourinho was already proving to be a huge success for Los Blancos. It was former Manchester United star, and compatriot, Cristiano Ronaldo whose extra-time winner handed Mourinho a new piece of silverware.
REAL MADRID 1 ATLETICO MADRID 2 (AET) (17/05/2013)
In what was essentially a home fixture for Real, Mourinho was sent to the stands after remonstrating with a referee's decision as he saw his side go down 2-1 after extra-time. Ronaldo got the hosts off to the perfect start before Diego Costa pegged Real back. Early in extra-time, Miranda silenced the Bernabeu and Atletico held on to their lead. Tensions erupted as the game came to an end in a real demonstration of the fierce Madrid rivalry which exists as Mourinho suffered just his second cup final loss.
CHELSEA 2 TOTTENHAM 0 (01/03/2015)
In winning the first piece of silverware of his second spell at Chelsea, Mourinho was defensively astute in his tactical planning in the League Cup final. A captain’s goal from John Terry on the stroke of half-time and a deflected Diego Costa effort wrapped up the game for the Blues.
MAN UTD 3 SOUTHAMPTON 2 (26/02/2017)
A match which probably saw the better team lose, but nonetheless Mourinho’s first ‘real’ silverware at Old Trafford. A late Zlatan Ibrahimovic goal broke the hearts of a spirited Southampton side, who had come from two goals down, and gifted Mourinho yet another cup final victory.
Following the win vs Southampton, Mourinho said: “I'm a bit emotional yes. It's not easy to win titles and so many times. It's not easy to cope with the pressure I put myself under.”
An unbeaten final record in English competitions, never losing a final in 90 minutes, Mourinho certainly knows how to get the job done in the big games.