Jose Mourinho and his current struggling Chelsea outfit go into their upcoming fixture with Leicester City amid a renewed sense of pressure down at Stamford Bridge.
Although the Blues successfully claimed safe passage to the knock-out stages of the Champions League last week, the recent home loss to Bournemouth nonetheless leaves the Premier League title holders with it all to do domestically.
Chelsea currently sit a lowly 16th place in the league table and as both the Cherries and Newcastle United have now leap-frogged them in recent outings, the Stamford Bridge faithful may have to start taking the threat of relegation a little more seriously if their team fail to beat the plucky Foxes tonight.
So then, in what has so far proven an utterly disastrous league campaign for the Blues this term, have the critics in-fact been a bit harsh towards Jose Mourinho himself?
[ffc-gal cat=”chelsea” no=”5″]
Does the former Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss warrant all the blame for unforeseen turn of events among his once formidable side this season, or is the enigmatic Portuguese manager fully deserving of the treatment he has received by the British media of late?
Although Chelsea have indeed floundered rather dramatically in the Premier League this season, it’s fair to say that Jose Mourinho receives a shade more negative media attention than most Premier League managers would in his current position.
The Blues have struggled all across the pitch, yet ever since the still relatively unclear saga surrounding both Eva Carneiro and Jon Fearn at the beginning of the season, many voices within the game have sought to criticise the under-fire Chelsea boss at every given opportunity.
It seems as if many football fans out there are enjoying the unfortunate fate of Chelsea almost as much as seeing their own team win.
The likes of Eden Hazard, Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas have failed to impress just as much as their manager on an individual level, the Blues’ back-line suddenly looks a great deal weaker than it last season and although the buck seemingly always stops with the main man in the dug-out, what do people expect from Jose Mourinho when his players are clearly underperforming so dramatically?
Yet because almost any other managerial candidate would have been sacked down at Stamford Bridge long before it reached this stage, perhaps the current Chelsea boss is actually a rather lucky man indeed. For all the sensationalised stories gleefully covering the downfall of his side this season, Mourinho seems to have lost his dressing-room, which wouldn’t bode well for any top-flight coach looking to hold down his job.
As the 52-year-old tactician usually plays the role of the willing media darling when things are going well, the subsequent backlash surrounding his less than successful antics in 2015/16 therefore comes as little surprise.
The increasingly pressured Chelsea boss has often used the media forum to bad-mouth rival Premier League managers in somewhat unnecessary fashion, his unwillingness to accept defeat this term has been pathetic – and as the former Porto favourite has enjoyed a rather glistening reputation up until this season, it seems only fair that Jose Mourinho now has to endure more flack than most Premier League managers would usually receive.
Very few expected Chelsea to falter as much as they have this term after claiming the league title in unrivalled fashion last season. The sheer turnaround in fortunes in west London has turned the team’s current domestic plight into one of the major talking points of the campaign so far.
And as there have previously been very few opportunities to meaningfully criticise the Blues manager throughout his time in England, Jose Mourinho is subsequently facing more heat than ever before right now.
When any highly coveted manager builds their entire identity around childish remarks and so-called gamesmanship tactics off the field, they have to expect an equally childish backlash to await them when the going eventually proves much tougher than before.
If Mourinho can’t take the abuse when it’s levelled at him, he should ultimately stop dishing it out when the shoe is on the other foot.