Straight from the dark heart of Italy
So Jose Mourinho has got his sights set on a stint in Italy. We can rest assured that the Special One isn’t interested in turning Catania into a Serie A powerhouse, so that leaves Juventus and the two Milanese clubs. He’s been smooching away to La Gazzetta dello Sport about his love of all things Italian, but will the charm offensive pay off?
On the face of it, AC Milan seems as good as anywhere to resume his career. Carlo Ancelotti’s position looks shakier than ever after the Champions League debacle. If he doesn’t fashion a fourth-placed finish then Silvio Berlusconi may opt for a new beginning, much as he did when he brought Arrigo Sacchi in twenty years ago.
However, Milan can seldom stand to get rid of their own and if they do decide to move Carlo on then a former player such as Frank Rijkaard would ease that guilt. Berlusconi is so taken with his creaking old squad (or ‘children’, as he likes to call them) that he's even trying to persuade Paolo Maldini to play on for another year and is ready to welcome that prodigal son Andriy Shevchenko back with open arms. It’s also questionable that Mourinho could hack another meddling owner, while there is also the Marcello Lippi factor – although there are a couple of high-profile Rossoneri who wouldn’t be too pleased to see the World Cup winner strolling through the gates at Milanello.
Meanwhile down the road at Appiano Gentile, Inter’s head honcho Massimo Moratti certainly doesn’t mind if his coach is outspoken and has the money to throw around to keep Jose happy. Although Roberto Mancini has been breaking records in Serie A, it’s the Champions League that Moratti dreams of now and if Liverpool dump his side out next week then he might turn to a man with a proven record in the competition.
Down the motorway in Turin, Juventus would be Mourinho’s most ambitious move. The Old Lady don’t have any millions to speak of and the team needs four or five quality players to launch a challenge for the league, never mind a crack at Europe. On the plus side, Juve’s new straight-laced management would probably give the former Chelsea boss carte blanche on team affairs if he were to oust Claudio Ranieri from his job for a second time. However, the feeling in Italy is this a typical Jose sideshow and he’s only putting his name out there again to angle for a move to Catalonia.
I think you're right with the last line except I'm not so sure it is Barca he is holding out for.
As you say Juventus is a bit too ambitious for him. Inter will be safe with Mancini for a little while yet and the AC Milan project will be too huge. It would take more than 3 years to successfully replace the old guard with youth at Milan, and I think this is longer than the time scale he is looking for in his next project.
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