This was always a two year project. A veteran coach with a distinctive tactical system and a certain domineering persona, both of which rub many the wrong way (GrateOne?). Definitely had the club's vote of confidence at the start - fat, multi-year deal done and dusted in time for some summer buys. But then the results have been a great disappointment this season. Despite them, I think we've been incredibly unlucky and that the short-term future with WM isnt as grim as most here suggest.
It has been said that Mazzarri has shown a lack of knowledge of his squad. On the one hand, an outrageous claim, considering WM's infamous attention to detail, but also strangely true. When WM first arrived, he basically started from scratch. Playing for Strama is so different from playing for Mazzarri, both in terms of tactics, but also in terms of culture. It's like night and day. It's the ultimate players' coach vs the super-demanding drill general. Players with different personality types can thrive or fail in such diametric environments and systems. In some ways, such a shock to Inter's core deserves 18 months simply for the dust to settle. The shift in coach, ownership, and culture means we need time to understand out who fits and time to successfully build around them. Better than another spin on the coach's carousel and another year zero.
The real question is: what players will remain as that core? Only a few obvious choices such as Jesus, Hernanes, D'Ambrosio, Rolando, Nagatomo, Campa, and already it's hard to think of another without real doubt. One article even describes Mazzarri's use of Alvarez as "showcasing" him. (link). Interesting concept. As I've said many times, business is business, and money is money.
If Thohir is indeed looking at this as a multi-year project, consider how WM's perception of a player's market value impacts the decisions he must make as a coach: Who does he focus on and build his team around? Who does he "showcase" for a transfer? Who does he try to motivate? Defend? Publicly chastise? Bench? Consider that when a coach sees a player as a key part of his future, it might be wise to develop him slowly and deliberately, while ensuring his transfer value doesn't tempt the pencil-pushers in business operations to take the money and run. The opposite is true in defending a mistake like Guarin's. Don't hurt the club's ability to sell the player you wanted to get rid of in January!
Ultimately, I respect WM for running a tight ship and putting his system above any one player (no matter his popularity on the internet). Sacrifice for the greater good is a fundamental key to group success. I understand that these results can and should make the fans question everything, but what Thohir really needs to figure out is the sense in the locker room of whether WM's project is salvageable. Is there buy-in from the squad? Unfortunately, it's not a clear cut question, but i think WM gets another 6-8 months after we essentially asked him to re-build the culture and identity of a club that he caught in free fall.