When the English press called upon the footballing gods to give them a manager that would keep every tongue wagging, the gods answered.
The answer: Jose Mourinho.
Back in England after a bittersweet stint in Spain with Real Madrid, the Special One is back for a second time with Chelsea. But in a recent press conference, Mourinho has decided to drop the Special One moniker for a new, boss-ier one. The Godfather.
‘Maybe I am just going to be the Godfather,’ he says.
The Godfather (we have to get used to this) also warned that this time would be different, and that no player was above being dropped from the starting line-up or sold.
Talking about John Terry, ‘He’s not safe,’ warned Mourinho. ‘He’s not safe and he knows he’s not safe. The only thing he knows is safe is our friendship, our relationship. Professionally, nobody is safe. Friends are friends but this is a business.
I have spoken to John,’ added Mourinho. ‘John has to work hard, give everything and the club will arrive at a conclusion. He loves the club. But he has to play completely free of that. I’m sure he’s able to do that, like Frank Lampard did.’
Lampard, Terry and Ashley Cole — stars of Mourinho’s original Chelsea team — are all out of contract next year and the manager admits his task is to balance regeneration and stability with success. No-one will be sold, he reiterated yesterday, Wayne Rooney is the only summer target and his tactical plans include restoring David Luiz to central defence and using Branislav Ivanovic mainly at right back.
‘For me, Luiz is a central defender,’ said Mourinho. ‘He can help the team playing in another position but he’s a central defender, no doubt about it.