Jose Mourinho had great potential as a player but was very lazy

Jose Mourinho had great potential as a player but was very lazy

- Jose Mourinho played as an attacking midfielder for a brief spell before calling it quits

- The Portuguese decided to focus on management at the tender age of 24

- Those who witnessed him as a player say he had the ability and potential to be world class but was not necessarily a hardworking personality

When you think of Jose Mourinho, the first term that comes to mind arguably is “The Special One” and for good reasons too.

He might have dipped in ratings in recent years, but the Portuguese is a serial winner by nature as a manager and might have just sealed his place in the history books.

But what about as a player? There is the famous football cliché that good players don’t necessarily make good managers, and perhaps the vice versa is true as well.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp also hilariously found himself at odds in determining Mourinho’s playing position in his heyday during a press conference.

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His wild guess was that Mourinho was a goalkeeper as a player, something that could not be any further from the truth.

Klopp, during a presser in January, asked journalists to google Mourinho and it was found that the Portuguese played in the midfield, contrary to popular belief.

Justifiably, however the error in judgement might have come from the fact that Mourinho’s father Mourinho Felix, was a talented keeper who even won an international cap for Portugal.

The Mourinho we all know and love failed to live up to the expectations and with all due respect, as a player, he was anything but The Special One.

As a player, the 57-year old did not enjoy any popularity.

Playing as an attacking midfielder, Mourinho was often deemed too skinny and despite making it to the top flight with Setubal, he struggled to make a name for himself, having been handed the #10 jersey.

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He made just one appearance in the Portuguese top flight under his father with Rio Ave in the 1981-82 and as the days went, he realised perhaps football was not for him.

In an interesting twist, Mourinho, who was only 24, retired and embarked on a coaching career.

It is also kind to note that his pre-mature playing career has been used against him in recent times by various managers who have found themselves in a verbal tussle with Mourinho.

"He has won [trophies], and I congratulate him for that, but before he won them, I had already done that as a player. Perhaps this is a big frustration for him because he will never be the kind of player I was," former Porto legend Jaime Pacheco said once said in an infamous press conference in 2006.

Remember the Premier League feud with Antonio Conte? Well the Italian also once called out Mourinho for his lack of success in the playing field in his heyday.

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"I was a football player, so I know how to behave on the pitch," Conte once said in 2016 on what was a stormy clash between the two managers.

Had great potential but was very lazy: A look at Jose Mourinho as a player

Antonio Conte is clearly not a big fan of Jose Mourinho. Photo: Getty Images.
Source: Getty Images

One distinct and fond memory Mourinho will however have is scoring a hat trick in a senior game.

He was introduced by his father Felix Mourinho in a game with the scores 8-0 at half time in the game between Belenensees (then a second-tier outfit) and Vila Franca do Campo.

From the proceedings it is easy to conclude Mourinho is a better manager than he ever was a player.

But those who witnessed the Portuguese playing will beg to differ as they would argue that Mourinho indeed had the talent, but talent alone is never enough.

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Earlier, reported that Jose Mourinho is still on the backdrop of a 5th Round FA Cup defeat to Norwich which stretched his team to the limits.

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The Lily Whites lost 3-2 on penalties to the Canaries after both sides settled for a 1-1 draw after the entire 120 minutes of the match.

With away game against RB Leipzig in the Champions League, the Portuguese gaffer is concerned with his players being fatigued.

Mourinho admitted his side deserved to win but the intense run out had affected more of his squad.

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Source: Legit

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