Still the Special One? A closer look at Jose Mourinho’s current struggles

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Tom White, PA Sport Data Journalist
·3 min read
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Defeat to West Ham on Sunday extended Tottenham’s poor run and left Jose Mourinho pointing to “problems in the team that I cannot resolve by myself”.

Mourinho’s time at Tottenham has included his longest ever winless run, seven games, while their current slump began with three straight defeats, matching the longest losing run of the manager’s career.

Here, the PA news agency compares Mourinho’s current struggles to his career record.

Recent run

  • Tottenham 1 Liverpool 3, Premier League, January 28

  • Brighton 1 Tottenham 0, Premier League, January 31

  • Tottenham 0 Chelsea 1, Premier League, February 4

  • Tottenham 2 West Brom 0, Premier League, February 7

  • Everton 5 Tottenham 4 (aet), FA Cup, February 10

  • Man City 3 Tottenham 0, Premier League, February 13

  • Wolfsberger 1 Tottenham 4, Europa League, February 18

  • West Ham 2 Tottenham 1, Premier League, February 21

Spurs have won only two of their last eight games, with those victories coming against struggling West Brom and in the Europa League against Austrian underdogs Wolfsberger.

Brighton are the most striking name among the teams to beat them during the sequence, with that 1-0 reverse at the Amex Stadium sandwiched between losses to Liverpool and Chelsea.

The win over West Brom avoided Mourinho’s first four-match losing run, but, of the five occasions he has lost three in a row, two have come since joining Spurs. He had previously suffered that fate with Porto in 2002, Chelsea in 2006 and Manchester United in 2016.

With Manchester City and a wild FA Cup tie against Everton accounting for the other defeats, a tricky set of fixtures has certainly played its part, but concern will be mounting over whether Mourinho can help his side turn the corner.

Diminishing returns

Jose Mourinho consoles Lucas Moura, left, after Spurs' Champions League defeat to Leipzig
Mourinho consoles Lucas Moura, left, after Spurs’ Champions League defeat to Leipzig (John Walton/PA)

Taking the longer-term view, Mourinho’s spell with Tottenham appears his least successful since his early days in management.

His win percentage with the club, 50.7 per cent, is his lowest by a considerable margin with any club he has managed for at least a season.

While his brief early spells with Benfica and Uniao de Leiria saw him hover around the 50 per cent mark, he won between 62 and 72 per cent of matches with Porto, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and in his first spell at Chelsea.

His return to Stamford Bridge saw him dip to a 58.8 per cent win rate, followed by 58.3 per cent with Manchester United before a marked drop-off in north London.

He also went seven games without tasting victory for the first time in his career, again starting with three straight losses against Leipzig, Chelsea and Wolves.

A penalty shootout defeat to Norwich, a draw with Burnley and a second loss to Leipzig followed before March’s coronavirus shutdown and United added to Mourinho’s misery in the first game back before victory over West Ham stopped the rot.

His previous longest winless run was five games, once with Chelsea in 2007 and again at Inter the following year.