Not sure if you knew that Jose Mourinho has begun writing a new autobiography – as ‘Made in Portugal’ sounds a bit parochial now and so last decade?
A book of two halves, the first will be entitled ‘The Dark Night’ and the second may be ‘The Dark Night Rises Again’ or not. There has always been something of the night about Jose, especially when defending; defending his ongoing decision to send all the best young players at his disposal out on loan and then logging in to amazon, and defending himself before anyone has even attacked him.
Jose wasn’t always like this. He used to spend many a happy hour with Sir Bobby Robson, re-running Ipswich’s 1978 FA Cup Final victory over Arsenal, and with Louis van Gaal re-running his ever-divisive choice of lovely hair/shirt/tie/suit combinations which eventually gave the Dutch top tier its name of Eredivisie.
Jose’s life changed forever though after watching Christian Bale as Batman. It wasn’t just Bale’s performance as the ‘good guy’ that so affected him, it was the fact that Jose realised then, in a quiet moment by the sea as the sun sank in the west once more and the fish popped up for air between the plastic detritus on the water’s surface, that he had always wanted to play the hero but was, instead, destined to always appear in the role of The Joker.
No matter that he and his agent came up with the ‘Special One’ tag (after that infamous visit to a basement ‘salon’ on Fulham Broadway) and went on to show an uncanny affinity with shopping carts at Chelsea, survived the empire of the sun at Madrid and starred as ‘Mancunian Psycho’ in the acclaimed sequel to ‘Ferguson’s Fury,’ Jose never quite put smiles on his or anyone else’s faces.
Increasingly distant from everyone else’s reality, Jose continued to follow Bale’s career with interest, trying to conjure up, one more time, the never-know-when-you’re-beaten spirit of ‘The Fighter’ but really dreading being uncovered and revealed as a con artist by old football pros, as in the ‘Spanish Hustle.’
With the rest of the football world looking back over 25 years of corporate greed, Jose was allowed to descend into a twilight zone where imagination and reality were becoming difficult for him to tell apart. He considered that Juan Mata’s best acting role was in the wings; that Chris Smalling could defend, given enough caffeine and pre-shoot bacon rolls, and that all the football commentators who told him he could have gone to Poundland if he’d really wanted a Paul Pogba were just talking down a Doomsday Machine of their own making.
Under the toxic influence of rain and black pudding, Jose’s obsession with Bale became increasingly confused as he mistook him for another Welsh actor called Bale. To be fair, it was a pretty easy mistake to make as Gareth too has devoted much spare time to his craft and can now play most positions from surgeon to physiotherapist to wet nurse.
In a dramatic turn, Jose realised that if he couldn’t be Bale, he could now buy him for Manchester United. His confusion was highlighted by referring to this plan as ‘Mission Impossible’ and allowing himself to be called by his English name of (Lucky) Jim, rather than Jose, but he chose to accept the mission anyway. Sadly, for Jose, BUPA and private hospitals throughout the North West there was to be no happy ending.
Gareth and his make-up team started the UEFA Super Cup match against Manchester United as Real Madrid fans were treated to a vintage performance of early shin strain worries, followed by two near misses as he hit the bar rather than the barbers.
While Gareth and Paul will no doubt continue to be typecast in their fantasy football roles as ‘players that really are worth more than the entire national debt of the Cayman Islands,’ Jose will surely soon exit the big stage as ‘the man who fooled nobody more than himself.’