The Special One. It would have to be Jose Mourinho christening himself with that moniker, because those within the game have something far more descriptive to call him, unrepeatable in this column.
The Portuguese has made more enemies than friends during his time in the game, but his relative success has allowed many of his failings to be masked.
Failings that he prefers to foist upon those players unlucky enough to get on his bad side. When all else fails, blame the players.
It’s become a habit for Mourinho. Chelsea, Real Madrid, Manchester United… players at each of these clubs will attest to his way of working, and it isn’t ‘motivation.’
Mourinho is a bully, plain and simple. And like all bullies, he’ll always pick on one of two targets.
The supposed weakest link, not necessarily in a playing sense, or the most popular in the dressing room.
Paul Pogba, the life and soul of United’s dressing room, is just the latest to come under fire. But he’s being played out of position… by Mourinho!
Stick him in his natural midfield slot and there you have a player who more than justifies his £100m+ transfer spend.
The Frenchman can handle the mind games, but Luke Shaw has never been able to dodge Mourinho’s bullets which stem from when he turned down the Portuguese, then at Chelsea.
Apparently, Shaw and his family had a tense meeting with Mourinho and were left particularly unimpressed.
The wheel continued to turn, and their paths would cross again once the Special One made the decision to take the job at Old Trafford.
And despite initial murmurings of Shaw being United’s left-back for the following six years, it wasn’t long before the inevitable campaign began.
Lest we forget that Shaw is still only 22 years old. In football parlance, he’s got his best years ahead of him.
So, theoretically, he is still in the development stage, where guidance and an arm around the shoulder would be of far more use than hanging him out to dry in public.
Just ask Iker Casillas, Pepe, Eden Hazard or Cesc Fabregas. There are many more examples. Even Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos had tired of his antics and gave Real an ‘either he goes or we go’ ultimatum.
But the difference between all of those players and Shaw is they are far more experienced professionals.
Mourinho’s behaviour towards the left-back is reprehensible but indicative of the man.
Shaw has never been given the chance to prove himself after his horrific injury against Eindhoven.
And as long as Mourinho is his manager, he never will.
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