The affair, to call it that because there’s little love left in it, between Jose Mourinho and Barcelona is one of the most interesting narratives in football.
Previously a translator and later coach at Barcelona in the late 1990s, Mourinho was supposedly close to the managerial job in 2008. The story goes that Pep Guardiola and Mourinho were the final two candidates.
Between that and a number of Champions League ties where the animosity between Barcelona and Mourinho grew exponentially, the relationship reached boiling point during his time at Real Madrid.
According to some within the club at Barcelona, that managerial snub was the trigger. Movistar+ asked the Portuguese manager if he was ever close to the Barcelona job, with Marca carrying the quotes.
“They asked me to do an analysis of the situation of the team in an ugly moment, a moment of transition from the bad to the good, it was difficult.”
“The person who asked me to do it was someone high up in the club. I did it, but nothing more. Then, fortunately for me, history took its course.”
Regardless of what happened between the two, there’s little doubt that a bitterness remained in Mourinho’s management as he made an assault on Barcelona’s hegemony at the time. The fortune was that it led to one of the most fascinating periods in football history.