English punk rock group The Clash (with a slight lyric tweak) provides the tag line for this weekend’s most pressing Premier League question. Jose Mourinho, should he stay or should he go?
Chelsea the defending Premier League champions have registered just 11 points in 11 games and find themselves 15th in the league table. The results for Chelsea have been poor and the club is not defending and finishing their chances as they did last season when they only lost three out of 38 matches. It is November first and the Blues have already dropped six matches which is something no one would have predicted to happen on this calendar date entering this season.
While the play on the pitch has been sub-par for a club with the number of quality players in it’s squad, the behavior of Mourinho both on and off the touchline has been quite odd and cynical even for the “Special One’s” standards. Mourinho is clearly under pressure and looks like a manager who has ran out of ideas when being placed into a situation he has never encountered before. Sources say the under pressure manager held “crisis” talks with Roman Abramovich after yesterday’s Liverpool loss and the Portuguese manager has the two matches this week to save his job.
One sticking point for Chelsea sacking Mourinho could be the pay out that the club would have to pay to send Mourinho on his way. Just this last August the club extended Mourinho’s contract four years at a reported £9.5m per season. Meaning it would require Abramovich and the club to lay out upwards of £30-40m to pay Mourinho off. Although a report in the Mirror (take with a HUGE grain of salt) claims their is a clause in the contract that requires the club to only pay one year (£9.5m) of compensation. If this report true it could make the Russian billionaires decision to let Mourinho go much easier.
This is a complicated situation for Chelsea because they are less than six months removed from winning the title and in order to sack Mourinho it would be best to have another quality manager already lined up. Hiring an elite manager in November with Chelsea in the situation they are in could prove to be quite difficult. We will see what happens this week but one would have to guess based on the rumblings coming out of Stamford Bridge that Jose’s second stint at Chelsea will end sooner rather than later.