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Thread: The Jose Experience

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    The Jose Experience

    The Jose Experience
    Sunday, 7 March 2010

    The recent match against Sampdoria saw Inter finish a second consecutive match without scoring a goal and finishing the game with 9 players. If consecutive goalless draws and the narrowing of Inter’s eleven point lead at the top of the table was not cause for concern, then the subsequent issue of a €40,000 fine and three match suspension to Jose Mourinho as well as two week suspensions for Esteban Cambiasso and Sulley Muntari and single week suspensions for Cordoba and Samuel should definitely have caused alarms to start ringing.

    At a time when Milan and Roma are in top form, Inter have been distracted and the team has to an extent, lost its focus in Serie A, jeopardising a fifth consecutive Scudetto. The Champions League aside, responsibility for the distractions falls solely at the feet of Jose Mourinho and this article will discuss the critical juncture at which the team has arrived at this point in the season and identify and assess the factors that have the potential to derail Inter’s season.

    The Jose Affect

    There is no denying that Inter have developed as a team under Mourinho. In terms of playing personnel the squad is better suited to Mourinho’s needs than in his first season. Although it seemed like complete madness at the time, the sale of Ibrahimovic to Barcelona allowed the club to purchase the likes of Lucio, Motta, Milito, Eto’o and Pandev which led to Inter having a more balanced squad and well rounded team.

    In terms of team unity and with the exception of a turbulent relationship with Balotelli, it is evident that there is a positive relationship and mutual respect between the players and Mourinho. The relationship between Mourinho and the players is transmitted on the pitch as the players follow Mourinho’s instructions and are willing to make sacrifices for the benefit of the team, a good example being Cambiasso playing out of position at centre back early in the season, Motta doing likewise in the recent match against Udinese and Captain Zanetti playing against Udinese whilst nursing an injury.

    Another area where Inter have improved under Mourinho is psychological strength. There is no team in Serie A that can match Inter in terms of psychological strength and the days of being psychologically vulnerable, fragile and beaten in big games prior to kickoff are a memory of the past as Inter often rise to the occasion.

    In difficult moments the players genuinely band together to ensure the team gets results. On the field, Inter’s statistics for this season speak volumes as they have trailed in nine matches and scored seven goals in the last 10 minutes to earn crucial points that have kept them at the top of the table. If you still require convincing, the recent matches against Milan and Sampdoria where Inter were reduced to 10 and 9 men respectively but nevertheless secured four out of six points are cases on point.

    Having analysed the areas where Inter has evolved as a team there are a number of issues that Mourinho should address to ensure that the squad remains focused for the remainder of the season.

    Nerazzurri vs. the World: A Siege Mentality

    Some may argue that results are all that matter and that as long as Mourinho continues to win games, the exchanges that take place during the week with the media, opposition coaches, club presidents and general managers makes little to no difference.

    There is much to be said about a coach that simply goes about his job and lets the results obtained speak for themselves. In recent weeks, Inter have been in the news on an almost daily basis and football has become secondary to courting controversy.

    Following the match against Sampdoria and Inter’s supposed mistreatment at the hands of referee Paolo Tagliavento, the club imposed a media ban and press silence. Upon reading about the press silence I was relieved and silently thought: “I hope it lasts for weeks!”

    Some commentators have stated that Mourinho courts controversy in a deliberate attempt to divert the media’s attention and pressure from his players. This widely held view may go some way to explaining his behaviour but the more palatable explanation is that he simply enjoys being the centre of attention.

    Italy has difficulties in accepting as their national champions, a team that is mainly comprised of foreign players, led by a foreign coach. As a result, the players receive scant recognition and respect for their efforts and the club is very much operating in hostile environment. Mourinho’s attitude, perceived by many as being rude, arrogant and provocative only reinforces the siege mentality.

    Although Inter are regularly in the headlines by way of the Mourinho’s interviews and actions, to be regularly lashing out and responding to the media, opposition coaches, club presidents and general managers is time consuming and simply creates more controversy and hostility. Some view the way Mourinho deals with the media as a form of entertainment but the reality is that his confrontational interviews are becoming tiresome and he should let his players do the talking and entertaining on the pitch.

    M & M’s: Mario and Mourinho

    With the exception of Antonio Cassano and the question as to whether Marcello Lippi should include him in the World Cup squad, no other player polarises opinion in Italian football like Mario Balotelli.

    In Mario, Mourinho has an immensely talented young player that has the potential to become one of the world’s best footballers but his immaturity, petulance and poor attitude are presently halting his progress.

    In Mourinho, Balotelli has one of the world’s best tacticians to guide him as a coach but he is impatient and frustrated at his lack of playing time and appears to be reluctant to accept the advice of his coach and more senior players.

    What many football commentators seem to forget is that Balotelli is still a teenager and if any criticism can be levelled at Mourinho during his time at Inter, it should be reserved for his treatment of Balotelli which has at times been harsh, unsupportive, and vindictive. Publicly berating Balotelli through the media and stating that his contribution to the team in some games was next to zero was unnecessarily harsh. Such criticisms could have been privately expressed to the player in person as opposed to humiliating and belittling him in public.

    It has been reported on a number of occasions that Arsene Wenger is interested in a transfer that would see Balotelli leave Inter for Arsenal. When this rumour circulates, one gets a distinct feeling that Wenger may be better able to manage the player and treat him with a great deal more patience, understanding and respect in comparison to Mourinho.

    In terms of attitude, it is unrealistic for supporters, teammates, Mourinho and club personnel to expect Balotelli to conduct himself with the seasoned experience of Captain Zanetti. The same applies to on field performances as it is a well known fact that young players can at times be inconsistent and do not play to the lofty expectations of their supporters.

    The difficulty for Balotelli is that he is a teenager who is required to fit into a profession where he is a public figure whose every move is scrutinised and questioned. For a teenager to exist in such an environment is no doubt onerous. Although Balotelli is skilful and talented, he is still learning his profession and where most teenagers grow up and make mistakes without much scrutiny, Balotelli has no choice than to persevere in the spotlight of an intrusive media who revel and magnify his mistakes.

    When one combines Balotelli’s age with his upbringing, the fact that he is on occasions subjected to racial abuse when playing away from the Meazza, and is not recognised by some as being Italian as a result of the colour of his skin, then you are halfway to understanding some of his erratic behaviour and the difficulties he is facing early in his career.

    Having said that, Balotelli himself is not entirely blameless. Although the abovementioned factors are out his control, the play-acting, taunting of opponents and their supporters, reckless bookings and at times poor work rate are factors of which the player has control and will have to improve if he is going to make the leap in class and fulfil his undoubted potential.

    In Mourinho and Balotelli, Inter have two of the most intriguing characters and biggest ego’s and in Italian football who may have to simply learn to get used to each other in order to co-exist. Recently, Moratti gave an interview where he stated that he would like to keep Mourinho at the club beyond the expiry of his contract in 2012 and with regards to Balotelli, Moratti has stated on numerous occasions that his future lies at Inter and he has no intention of selling the player.
    From recent performances it is clear that although Mourinho continues to select Balotelli behind Milito, Eto’o and Pandev, the player regularly makes an impact and contributes to Inter’s results either in the form of goals or assists.

    Despite not being a starter at Inter, Balotelli is gaining recognition for his efforts and the likes of Casiraghi, Lippi, and President of the FIGC Giancarlo Abete, have all recently praised and encouraged the player in the last week. Such praise and recognition is important for Balotelli and being promoted to the Italian national team from the Azzurrini could well be a career turning point in the sense that it would confirm the player’s long held ambition to play for and be called upon by the Nazionale as well as provide much desired confirmation and recognition of his nationality.

    All working and professional relationships are fraught with disagreements and differences but the sooner Mourinho and Balotelli understand and acknowledge that they need and rely on the other, the better off Inter and the Italian National team will be for Balotelli’s inclusion.

    Mourinho and the Champions League

    Was the home win in the first leg match of the Champions League against Chelsea really such an extraordinary result? The “achievement” of winning at home against English opposition indicates the inferiority complex that Italian teams, and in particular, Inter have developed as a result of poor performances against their English counterparts.

    Regardless of the opposition, obtaining three points at the Meazza is a result that should be naturally expected of the Italian champions on home soil. As much as the result was celebrated and seen by some as a breakthrough in Italy, a great deal can be said of the way Chelsea and their supporters reacted to the loss.

    Having considered the opportunities that fell to them in the first leg, as well as Inter’s difficulties in recent years when it comes to playing English opposition away from home, Chelsea appear to be quietly confident of overturning the deficit in London.

    The second leg against Chelsea hangs in the balance and much depends on the start Inter make on the day, whether the team plays to its capabilities, or whether they put on an insipid performance similar to their showing in Barcelona when the starting eleven resembled sightseers at a museum as opposed to footballer players on one of the greatest stages in European football.

    Despite having made the Champions League a pre-season objective, Inter will struggle to win the competition and the club’s involvement in the competition may have the affect of distracting the team from defending and retaining a fifth consecutive Scudetto.

    Winning the Champions League requires a strong, versatile and dynamic squad and although Inter have evolved since Mourinho’s arrival, one gets the feeling that the club is not yet in a position to win the competition, a fact confirmed by the team’s erratic form in the group stage of the competition.

    Further additions need to be made to the squad and season 2010-2011 should be the year where the club can realistically aim for an assault on Europe and the Champions League. The more important question that needs to be asked is whether Mourinho will remain at Inter to lead the club or whether he will seek a move elsewhere.

    Spain and England Calling?

    The rumours of Mourinho coaching in Spain or returning to England are persistent and ever present. Mourinho has stated on a number of occasions that he has a positive and sincere relationship with Moratti and respects the professional relationships he is building at Inter. But with the exception of kissing Inter’s club badge in the press conference before the match against Chelsea, there is precious little to suggest that he is fond of or has a passion for Inter and would consider a stay at the club beyond the expiry of his contract in 2012.

    It may well be that Mourinho shies away from such declarations so as to remain impartial and to be able to do his job. Alternatively, it may be the case that he does not want to make such declarations as it is impossible to foresee the future. But what is abundantly clear is that he speaks fondly of his former players and time at Chelsea and has remained silent on making such declarations in relation to Inter and Italy with there being no indication or comment that he would consider remaining at the club beyond 2012.

    Between now and the expiry of Mourinho’s contract in 2012, the likelihood of a split between Inter and Mourinho seems remote given the large amounts of money that Inter would need to pay out his contract.

    Unfortunately, it is hard to perceive Mourinho’s time at Inter as anything more than a long term caretaker’s role as he waits for the right time to forward himself as a candidate for coaching positions at Real Madrid or Manchester United and exercise the clause of his contract that would allow him to leave Inter by paying the club for his release.

    It may be too early to consider Mourinho’s future at Inter but it continues to be raised on a regular basis and is another factor that has the potential to distract and destabilise the club. Having said that, Mourinho must be complimented on the way he dealt with the latest rumours linking him with a move to Real Madrid where he simply stated that some journalists are dishonest and invent stories and that he did not want to get into the game concerning speculation regarding his future. Much of the same for the remainder of the season would be appreciated Mr Mourinho.

    Conclusion

    Until a short time ago, Inter had an eleven point lead at the top of Serie A and were favourites to win a fifth consecutive Scudetto. The month of February was unkind to the Nerazzurri as draws against Parma, Napoli and Sampdoria allowed Milan and Roma to re-enter the race for the Championship.

    It is difficult to predict how the season will end. Inter are in a favourable position and it is better to be leading the championship by three points rather than trailing by the same margin but as the month of February showed, it is crucial that Mourinho and the team remain focused.

    The media, taunts by opposition coaches and club presidents and speculation regarding his future are secondary to winning the championship and Mourinho has a duty as coach to simply focus on his players and forget the petty hostilities that have served as distractions and allowed Milan and Roma to once again be protagonists in the race for the Scudetto.

    All of the above sounds easy but knowing Mourinho, he will return in a confrontational and combative mood and his first press conference will see a resumption in hostilities where he will in all likelihood address the taunts to which he was subjected and unable to respond during the course of the ban.

    Before doing so, Mourinho should give serious consideration to the fact that if Inter lose this season’s race for the Scudetto, the whole of Italy, with the exception of the Nerazzurri faithful will rejoice and any sentiments of remorse or sympathy will be discarded when football commentators, opposition fans and neutral observers look back and recall a team that worked hard, were top of the table for most of the season, obtained remarkable results but nonetheless squandered an eleven point lead as a result of their coach’s self interests.

    In reality, the choice should be simple but questions of ego and the desire to be the main focus of attention will ensure we only have an answer on 16 May 2010.
    Last edited by Puma; 07 Mar 10 at 12:21.

  2. #2
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    Why do you want that great article to be deleted? I managed to read it and it was really great to read. You really put time and effort to think through all your opinions and put them into a readable form, even if the length of the text was pretty long.

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    Please let us to read it man..

    I know that you are great writer.
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    Its a great article. Even if I don't agree with you on mou.
    Forza Inter per sempre!!!!
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    Great article man. Keep em coming.

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    I agree with a lot of things with Puma, but this time I don't. I would like to comment on many points, but it would take some time, to go through them all carefully, so I will just limit myself to questions.

    It's true that Jose is a person who likes to confront everyone, all the time and noone will deny that. He does have some part in the fact that we are hated so much. But is it the key factor here ?

    Weren't we already hated like noone after we "stole" the scudetto in 2006 ? Weren't we hated by everyone for what Moratti did, for what power have we become before Mourinho came ?

    Wasn't the press already biased like hell (even GdS turned against us with their laughable tables) ? Wasn't it you Puma who even pointed out about those mistakes, or mistakes Milan was granted (I'm not sure what was the topic, but it deffinetly was something about mistakes, and being biased towards Inter about it) ?

    Jose does speak his mind, and many of his speaches are not the ones diplomats would do. But how many times, has he been wrong exactly (lets leave the match antics on the bench aside this time) ? Was he wrong with Zeru tituli speach ? Was he wrong with how Rocchi wanted to screw us over in the Derby game ?

    Are we not screwed over and over again by the FIGC with suspensions, and everything ? And it's not like that it's something new, because we all remember very well the laughable suspension Adriano got for diving.

    I know I'm boring, but to me the best people who understand what Mourinho is doing (media concerned), are interisti who live in Italy, who know what the press is doing to us day in, and day out. I'm not taking the right for us to comment on that, but I think that if we don't have that perspective, it has a big chance to not write an accurate comment on that.

    Let me summarise this way:

    If FIGC, Italian Media, people in italian football weren't biased towards us (and we know, it is not something new), and Mourinho was doing, what he is doing, I would find it hard to deffend him for that. I might accept it/tolerate it, but I wouldn't be very happy about it.

    But is it really the case we have ? Is Mourinho doing his beat, with the media/FIGC being innocent ?

    I was one of the people, how said (before we got Jose) that:

    Quote Originally Posted by Luka
    I'm so anxious to see those poor italian journalist, who thinks they can scare every inter manager, as everybody knows who holds the media in Italy, to see them against Mourinho. I mean he will literaly fu** them up. It doesn't matter if he is 1, and there are 100, 200, 500 journalists against him, he will tell you what he thinks, and he will not hold anythink back.

    There is noone more perfect to be an inter coach, where every media in Italy is waiting for a little incident or anything, to exagerate it to the enormous size, and make Inter sweat.
    And this was back in 2008 in march. I couldn't be more right back then, and everytime Jose says something that is painfully true to the italian media, I smile in joy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stefan View Post
    Its a great article. Even if I don't agree with you on mou.
    Exactly my feelings. It's unfair on Mou, IMO.
    GRANDE INTER, Amore Mio!

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    Unfortunately, The Jose effect and experience is something you cannot write on when he is in charge. All this will only be seen when he leaves.... Great article though.


    Everything a man should be. We miss you Cipe.




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    This should be the final point Suneet.

    ps. I forgot to say it before, but it should be a key point
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    In this evening's match against Genoa, Inter looked a shadow of the team that we know. Their performance was lethargic and they lacked motivation and ideas. Baresi has little to no idea as to how to coach, direct and instruct a team and the most he did this evening was collect the balls as if he was a ball boy when they went out of bounds.

    In or around the 70th minute, Mourinho made himself visible and started shouting and issuing instructions from the corporate box area. It was unclear as to whether he was instructing our coaching staff or the players but by his mere presence the team's attitude and approach to the game changed.

    In my opinion, the useless nature of Mourinho's handcuff gesture and subsequent suspension was most poignant this evening. At a time when his team most needed him, he was suspended and unable to guide his players from the bench. I believe this point was not lost on him because at one stage he attempted to shout instructions and subsequently turned his back in frustration in his inability to be able to do anything.

    Inter dropped vital points this evening not because they were outplayed or because Genoa played well, but because they did not approach the match with the right mentality and their coach was not present to direct and focus the team. And why was he not present? Because of a useless gesture that has caused more harm than good. But his conduct is nonetheless justifiable because Inter has a coach that inevitably speaks his mind regardless of the cost to his team and the fact that his actions have the potential to compromise Inter's whole season. But thats okay, it is really the FIGC's fault because they do not want to see Inter succeed and Mourinho is not responsible for his actions.

    With matches against Roma (away), Fiorentina (away) and Juventus in the last 10 weeks of the season, Inter need all the points they can collect. Inter failed miserably this evening and Mourinho is responsible for his team's failure.
    Last edited by Puma; 07 Mar 10 at 22:36.

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    Good point, but I still wouldn't blame solely on Mourinho. Players were simply lethargic today and thought they could win the match by not working for 90mins. Still, Jose has the responsibility of the result so he must be blamed too.

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    No offence Puma, but you really seem to love blaming Mou for everything. It's even up to the point where it's unfair really.
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    I caught a cold because I was stressed from last night, its Mourinho's fault the handcuff gesture.

    He can only do so much, the players didnt have the fire last night, it was one of the days they really thought they could win, the Chelsea win has had its affect.


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    Puma, how is it Mou's responsibility when the 3-match ban given to him was utterly ridiculous and excessive? How would he have known that a handcuff gesture merits THIS kind of punishment?

    That's my primary objection to your point. Had Mourinho done something more blatant, cursing the referee let's say, then he must shoulder most of the blame. But in this case, it's like blaming someone who has been made a victim.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Handoyo View Post
    Puma, how is it Mou's responsibility when the 3-match ban given to him was utterly ridiculous and excessive? How would he have known that a handcuff gesture merits THIS kind of punishment?

    That's my primary objection to your point. Had Mourinho done something more blatant, cursing the referee let's say, then he must shoulder most of the blame. But in this case, it's like blaming someone who has been made a victim.
    Given:

    (1) The events that transpired in the match, namely two red cards for our centre backs; as well as

    (2) The hostile environment surrounding the club that has been by and large exacerbated by Mourinho’s confrontational attitude;

    It does not take much to understand and realise that any step out of line would warrant sanctions from the officials. If the officials are clamping down on blasphemy on the pitch, they are not going to tolerate inflammatory gestures from the coach of the Italian Champions and league leaders. The fact that it was Mourinho simply made it easier for the officials to act and part of their reaction was in response to a figure in Calcio that has done nothing in recent months other than criticise and lash out. It may well be the case that Mourinho can speak his mind and do whatever he likes but he will be sanctioned and the team will suffer as a result. The match against Genoa being a case on point.

    Whether he likes it or not, Mourinho is one of the leading figures in Italian football and with that status comes certain responsibilities. Mourinho bought the sport into disrepute by his handcuff gesture and subsequently let down the team because his ban ensured that he could not lead and direct them from the sidelines. Mourinho not being there in the match against Genoa led to us dropping points at a vital time in the championship, a fact that was subtly acknowledged by both Branca and Moratti in their interviews following the match when they stated that the team missed Mourinho’s presence on the sidelines.

    For every action, there is a reaction. Unfortunately, some posters fail to acknowledge that Mourinho can possibly do wrong and continue to argue that he has been treated harshly. Perhaps the ban was excessive but it has an element of deterence in the sense of serving as a warning to not repeat such actions in the future.
    Last edited by Puma; 09 Mar 10 at 09:01.

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    I still think the ban is ridiculous..
    and cannot blame it on Mou

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    I still disagree with your reply, George.

    Going by that logic, maybe we should play less roughly when it comes to defending our own penalty box then, given the history of how unfavorable Inter is to the referees?

    Just because we live in a world of unfair treatment towards our club, it doesn't mean that we have to bow down and adjust our ways to suit that environment. As a matter of fact, I see Mourinho's actions as finally an Inter defiance towards the higher power, after succumbing to them for the past decade or so. Whether this is the correct tactic or not, I'm undecided. But I'm in the side that thinks that Mourinho is not simply doing these things on a whim, but it's all planned.

    The ban on the handcuff gesture was completely unprecedented, out of line and even full of assumption. And George, it is also wrong to make an example out of one coach and for the Lega Calcio to give such an excessive ban so as to serve as a future warning. That is simply an unfair system of justice, regardless if it's on sport or in real life.

    ==================================================

    I just re-read your article and want to make some more comments, with regards to Mourinho's treatment on Balotelli. If you remember George, Mourinho's earliest treatment when it comes to Balotelli was that of a protective figure. He would defend the player from the press and not blame him publicly at all.

    But at a certain point, that tactic was not working. I clearly remembered him mentioning something along the line of "I've tried treating him nicely, I've tried treating him harshly, and nothing works." So what's happening lately with regards to his comments on Balotelli is that Mou is trying the hard ball treatment on Balotelli again. Since Balo seems to be improving, maybe this measure is really the correct way to go instead of letting Balo off easy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Puma View Post
    Given:

    Mourinho bought the sport into disrepute by his handcuff gesture and subsequently let down the team because his ban ensured that he could not lead and direct them from the sidelines. Mourinho not being there in the match against Genoa led to us dropping points at a vital time in the championship, a fact that was subtly acknowledged by both Branca and Moratti in their interviews following the match when they stated that the team missed Mourinho’s presence on the sidelines.

    For every action, there is a reaction. Unfortunately, some posters fail to acknowledge that Mourinho can possibly do wrong and continue to argue that he has been treated harshly. Perhaps the ban was excessive but it has an element of deterence in the sense of serving as a warning to not repeat such actions in the future.

    I can't agree with your point that Mourinho brought the sport into disrepute. We all know about the Calciopoli, guess who caused it? Not Mourinho. It was already in disrepute when Mourinho moved to Italy. This disrepute continues with the apparent biasness on the part of the referees (possibly with approval from the higher authorities) who have recently become more strident in the way they mete out punishment to Inter players whereas Milan & Juve players (and that of some other teams) are not punished for the same fouls on the pitch.

    Nobody, absolutely nobody, would have thought that a handcuff gesture can be construed as "bringing the sport into disrepute", not to mention that a certain Milan player got off scott free opemly showing a more vulgar sign with his hands at the crowd. I have not read the Rule Book of Serie A, but I certainly do not think they specifically stated that a coach should not make a handcuff gesture. Hence, this is a matter of interpretation. And the people who interpreted as such must already have a "disrepute" mentality to begin with to see it as such. It is not a harsh punishment, it is an unbelievably unthinkable one. A one-match ban would have suffice if the intention was to tell Mourinho to cool it. A 3-match ban, out of the blue without prior warning, is vindictive and a travesty of justice. Its real intention is to tell Mourinho to shut up because his noises are really making them feel very uncomforatble about what they have not been doing right.

  19. #19
    Luka's Avatar
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    Time to write "The Jose Experience ver.2" Puma
    Quote of the week:
    "Farewell - Let the Good Times Roll"
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    F.C. INTERNAZIONALE, DEPECHE MODE, UNIA TARNOW - Nothing more...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Luka View Post
    Time to write "The Jose Experience ver.2" Puma

    +1.
    GRANDE INTER, Amore Mio!

    Dear Santa, the past year, you took my favorite singer, Michael Jackson and my favorite actor, Patrick Swayze.
    I want you to know for the next year, that Milan is my favorite oldie, and Juventus is my favorite bitch.

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