Jose Mourinho has expressed a desire to remain Manchester United manager for the next 15 years.
The Portuguese has already added two pieces of silverware to his personal cabinet – now 20 trophies strong – after just one season at Old Trafford.
He has never managed to enjoy a long term spell at any of his previous clubs, however, with his longest stint being three years at both Chelsea and Real Madrid.
But the 54-year-old, nodding towards Sir Alex Ferguson, has made note of the importance of longevity at Man United.
“I am ready for this,” he said. “I am ready for the next 15 years, I would say. Here? Yes, why not?”
“I have to admit that it is very difficult because of the pressure around our jobs, everybody putting pressure on managers and things that people say – that we have to win. But in reality only one can win and every year it is getting more difficult.
What I try to do in the club is show that my work goes further than the football results, that it goes to areas that people don’t think of as a manager’s job. In my vision, my job is much more than what I do on the pitch and the results that my team gets at the weekend.
“This club, for so many years, was Sir Alex. People got used to it. People understood the great consequences of that stability. After David Moyes and Mr Van Gaal, I come to my second year and hopefully I can stay and give that stability that the club wants. I will try, but again, I will have to try to deserve that, but that’s what I try every day that I work.
“I think Sir Alex’s career is unique. I don’t think it is possible to emulate. Nobody is going to be in the same club for so many years, be in the same league for so many years. I think Wenger will be the last with a similar story in terms of staying at a club for so many years.
“What I try to do in modern football nowadays is to try to deserve to stay in the club, because in this moment, it is about success. You have success, you stay in the club. You don’t have success, you don’t stay.
“You have huge success in one year, the next year you don’t have success and you are out. It happened to me at Chelsea, it happened to Ranieri at Leicester, it will happen to many others. Nowadays, people look much more on the short-term.”
Mourinho and longevity have always been antonymous terms: one and a half seasons at Porto, three at Chelsea, two at Inter, three at Madrid, two and a half at Chelsea again, and now here we are, entering season number two of the Special One at Old Trafford.
This is no coincidence: the Portuguese is hired on the pretext of guaranteeing short term success and, without exception, achieves it, kind of like an emphatic napalm strike, without really establishing any foundations for the future. Such a technique divides opinion: pragmatists love it whilst aesthetes criticise the lack of a broader scope.
But you sense that Mourinho treats United differently. Even at Chelsea as he was marching to yet another Premier League title he referred to Man United as the biggest club in the country. He recognises that, unlike with his previous clubs, there is more to United than just winning, and that in itself deserves immense praise.