Often called the “Special One”, José Mourinho is undoubtedly one of the greatest coaches to ever grace the game of football. The Portuguese legend has won trophies almost everywhere he has gone. From his very first in 2003 where he won the UEFA Cup with Porto to his most recent success with Roma in 2022. This article focuses on the latter club and the glorious strides he is making.

Roma Before José Mourinho (2020/21)

Before José Mourinho was appointed as the head coach of Roma, the Italian club was not doing too well. They finished the 2020/21 season 7th in Serie A with 62 points and 16 points off the top four. Roma also had one of the worst defensive records in the league as they conceded 58 goals that season. This put their goals conceded per game ratio at 1.5. 

Roma were also playing in the Europa league this particular season and did quite well. They were able to make it to the semi final of the competition before their hopes of silverware was destroyed by Manchester United. The tie ended 8-5 on aggregate.

José Mourinho’s in Roma (2021/22)

The special one was appointed as the Roma head coach on the 1st of July 2021. Mourinho’s first season with Roma was a little bit of an improvement on the previous season. He was able to guide the Giallorossi to a sixth place finish with 63 points. Mourinho was also able to plug some of the holes in defense as they conceded 15 less goals (43) in comparison to the 2020/21 season. 

Although the improvements did not really reflect on the Serie A table, Roma’s major success came in the conference league. José Mourinho once again made history as becoming the first manager to win the UEFA Europa Conference League. He also became the first manager to win the Champions League, Conference League, and Europa League.

This achievement was a great one for Mourinho but it was also a bigger one for Roma. The conference league triumph marked Roma’s first trophy in 14 years and their first european trophy since 1961. 

Roma’s 2022/23 season, so far.

After a successful 2021/22 season, the objective for Mourinho and Roma would be to qualify for the champions league. This could be achieved by winning the Europa league which they are currently in the round of 16.  And it could also be achieved by finishing top four in the Serie A where they currently sit fourth on the table. 

The 2022/23 season could prove to be another special season for the special one. Roma were only able to muster 18 wins in the Serie A in Mourinho’s first season. This season, they already have 13 wins with 15 games still to be played. Also, Mourinho has been able to stamp his defensive solidity in this Roma side. They have one of the best defenses in the league as they have only conceded 19 goals. This record is bested only by two clubs; the league leaders Napoli and Juventus. To put this into better perspective, after the first 23 games of last season, Roma had conceded 28 goals and now they are doing better having only conceded 19.

A chart showing the number of goals conceded by Roma in the serie a in the first 23 games of last season versus this season
Number of Goals Conceded by Roma in the Serie A in the first 23 games of last season vs this season.

Roma still have a lot to play for this season as the prospect of champions league football as well as silverware is still very possible. They will  be going up against Real Sociedad in the Europa league round of 16 on the 16th of March. If Roma are able to navigate their way to the final, you would definitely have to back Mourinho bringing in more silverware for the Giallorossi. Mourinho has taken charge of five European finals in his career and has won all. And his teams have also been able to keep clean sheets in all the finals except for one, which was the UEFA cup final in 2023.

Roma are definitely on the right track with José Mourinho at the helm of affairs. However, it would be a real struggle to keep him as his name always comes up when big clubs are looking to appoint new managers.

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