When Real Madrid signed Jose Mourinho in 2010, his mission was a simple one: to knock Guardiola’s Barcelona off their perch.
It turned out to be a fierce rivalry both on and off the pitch, with many red cards and countless heated press conferences from both managers. By the end of Guardiola’s spell in Catalonia, he had failed to win just four out of a possible 18 trophies, and three of those four were to Mourinho’s sides (La Liga and Copa Del Rey with Madrid and the Champions League with Inter).
Six years on we are in a similar position, but this time, as the rivalry is renewed, Pep and Mourinho share a city. It almost feels scripted. Once City hired Guardiola, United had to bring in his arch-enemy.
Mourinho’s appointment has been lingering for many months and the news has come as no surprise. Van Gaal took over a stalled Man Utd but his tenure did not meet the expectations of fans, just missing out on the Champions league spots this time round. His possession football was also criticised, but it was great to see Louis end on a high note with the FA Cup trophy.
But if it’s exciting attacking football that Manchester United fans want, Mourinho may not be the right man, but one thing we know for sure is that he’ll be doing his best to bring more silverware to Old Trafford. His style is defensive and he likes to build his teams from the back. I’m sure he will do whatever it takes and spend money on transfers over the summer, reshaping the squad that has been built by three managers since Sir Alex retired. With the rumours of Ibrahimovic joining Man Utd, it will be interesting to see if Mourinho puts faith in the youngsters and continues the progression of Martial and Rashford.
Next season we will be treated to an intense Manchester derby, while the rivalry between Mourinho and Wenger will hopefully relight the fire that used to be the Man Utd and Arsenal rivalry (that seems to have died down a little in recent years). The arrival of Antonio Conte will also bring excitement and hopefully success to Chelsea.
Whatever happens, it won’t be dull.