The worst kept secret in world football was confirmed on Monday morning as expected, with Chelsea FC naming Jose Mourinho as their new manager. Mourinho had been strongly linked to the job since the firing of Roberto Di Matteo back in the fall, and the one-year Interim Manager tag that was put on Rafael Benitez all but confirmed that Roman Abramovich was after Mourinho or a similar big name. Two days after Real Madrid's final league game, Chelsea confirmed Mourinho's hiring.
Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay spoke to the club website about the hire.
'It is our aim to keep the club moving forward to achieve greater success in the future and Jose is our number one choice as we believe he is the right manager to do just that. He was and remains a hugely popular figure at the club and everyone here looks forward to working with him again.'
Mourinho was first hired by Chelsea in 2004, following his UEFA Champions League triumph with FC Porto. While he couldn't deliver a European Cup to Chelsea, he did win the Premier League and League Cup twice, as well as the FA Cup one time. Following his time at Chelsea, he went to Inter Milan, where he won another European Cup and a treble in the 2009-10 season.
For the last three seasons, Mourinho has been the manager of Real Madrid, and the jury's still out on whether or not his time there was a success. He won La Liga and the Copa del Rey once, but failed to make a Champions League final and rarely got the better of Barcelona while at the helm of Los Merengues. Unfortunately, his lasting memory at the club might be this season's loss to Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey final.
Mourinho will be expected to turn Chelsea into a contender for multiple trophies right away. They have a squad strong enough to accomplish more than they did this season and Abramovich will be willing to open up his wallet and let Mourinho strengthen the team. Generally, a good coach and an owner willing to spend is an excellent combination, but Mourinho and Abramovich butted heads frequently at the end of his first Chelsea tenure, leading to his departure in 2007. Time will tell whether or not they've resolved their differences completely.