Just like that, two seasons and change is enough to make Jose Mourinho the head coach who has been the longest at his current La Liga post. Just goes to show you how unstable the life of a manager is in Spain.
How did Mourinho, who usually doesn’t stick around for more than 2-3 seasons at any club he works for, come across this “honour”? Well, Mauricio Pochettino, who was the head coach of Espanyol since January 2009, was fired/forced to quit after a terrible start, which sees the second Barcelona club rank last in the league with only 9 points after 13 matches.
Tito Vilanova (Barcelona), Mauricio Pellegrino (Valencia), Paco Jémez (Rayo Vallecano) and Juan Antonio Anquela (Granada) are all new to their jobs, replacing other managers during the summer.
So Mourinho, with two and a half years of experience at Real Madrid; with 138 matches and a 73.9% success rate, is the longest tenured head coach in Spain. Marcelo Bielsa has been with Bilbao since 2011; Diego Simeone only arrived at Atletico Madrid last year. Pepe Mel of Real Betis has the same time as Jose Mourinho at his current position, but he spent some of it in the Segunda Division, which makes him inferior to Mourinho in terms of La Liga time.
Managers, at big clubs or small, don’t last very long at their job, unless you’re part of a rare few. Especially in Spain, where success is drawn up differently on the board. The top two spots in the league are pretty much out of reach for 90% of the league, which means priorities should be reorganized and ambitions reshuffled. Still, too many teams expect miracles to happen without the needed funds and source materials (players) to actually help them occur. That’s when the manager eats it.
Jose Mourinho has actually been under quite a lot of pressure in each of his three seasons with Real Madrid. The first one, which ended disappointingly. In the second one, which ended with the La Liga title. Obviously this year, already 11 points behind league leaders Barcelona, causing Mourinho to complain about and blame everything and everyone but him, that thought of losing his job must be crossing his mind.