One has to give credit to Jose Mourinho, who, even in the face of relentless adversity, still says all the right things in an attempt to steady the ship at Tottenham.
Support his appointment or object to it, love him or loath him, Jose certainly has an uncanny knack for dealing with intense scrutiny.
Appearing calm, composed, both in defeat and victory, the gaffer emits an unchanged in-control aura. Aside from his excuses after last week’s defeat at Manchester City, Jose publicly backed his players, supporting them with encouragement, compassion and genuine care. Even his excuses were meant to shelter the lads from the gust of scrutiny heading the team’s way. He called out Sonny, Ben Davies, among others, for their fight, their will and dedication to bleed for the cause.
The gaffer is certainly no blunt instrument. He’s a complicated, intelligent manager with decades of elite experience, knowing precisely how to batten down the hatches and reinforce the windows in preparation of an oncoming storm. Unless you’re on the wrong side of Jose, he’ll go to extreme lengths to have your back.
The straight shooter has never minced his words, and never will. Players might not agree with how he publicly lambasts those out of his good graces, but at least they know where they stand. Serge Aurier, who recently stormed out of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium at halftime after being withdrawn against Liverpool, was on death row awaiting his final punishment. But Jose, unlike other instances in his career, found the maturity and wisdom to reconcile his differences with Aurier, offering the Ivorian clemency instead of condemnation.
Contrastingly, and in equal measure, the lion’s share of the team, those on the gaffer’s good side, appreciate Jose’s public support, particularly in the midst of obvious collective suffering. It’s crystal clear, at least publicly, that Jose still has the backing of his players.
In a recent interview, Sonny said the rumours that Jose has lost the locker room are pure hogwash (Sonny didn’t use the word hogwash, though).
It would be naive and rather ignorant to believe life behind the scenes resembles a euphoric utopian dreamland. Tottenham’s players are proud professionals who want to win every match, so losing won’t sit well with them.
However, Tottenham supporters, for the time being, can take great solace knowing their manager remains unwaveringly behind his crew.
As long as that remains the case, the players will return the favour and back their manager, regardless of whether Jose is offered clemency by the judge, jury and executioner.