I have to get something off my chest: José Mourinho is washed up.
Sure, the Portuguese gaffer has enjoyed a successful managerial career. He's secured two Primeira Liga titles, two Serie A titles, one La Liga title, and three Premier League titles, and was even named FIFA World Coach of the Year in 2010 during his stint at Inter Milan.
Mou's achievements are ancient relics. The current Manchester United boss has been on the hot seat for months as his squad continues to underperform week in and week out. Last Saturday, United drew 0-0 at home against a mediocre Crystal Palace side. Everton gained three points in a 1-0 victory over bottom feeders Cardiff, catapulting the Toffees into 6th in the Premier League Table while Mourinho's team slid into 7th.
For most clubs, 7th place in England's top division is considered to be a solid position. For the Red Devils, 7th place indicates something is wrong.
United has been inconsistent on both sides of the pitch this season. The 20-time English Champions are the only team in the top half of the table that maintains a negative goal difference. Only six clubs, all of which sit 14th or lower in the table, have conceded more goals thus far.
Mourinho prides himself on defensive stability as his best teams were renowned for frustrating opponents with their tight-knit structure and ability to halt even the most pertinent attacks. United's current backline, however, lacks discipline and has been easily exploited by opposing teams this season.
The Red Devils have also encountered difficulty on the offensive end. While 20 team goals in 13 fixtures certainly aren't dismal numbers, Mourinho's men have failed to exceed expectations. Heralded summer-signing Fred has tallied only one goal in 485 minutes of game time, and English prodigy Marcus Rashford can't hit water if he fell out of a boat.
Explosive Chilean winger Alexis Sanchez, who was scooped up from Arsenal in January, finds himself in Mourinho's doghouse, hardly seeing the pitch in recent weeks after a spell of unproductiveness.
There have been very few bright spots at Old Trafford this season. Former outcast Anthony Martial is in excellent form after bagging six goals in eight games, and cultural icon Paul Pogba has rediscovered himself following a poor showing in the previous campaign.
Anthony Martial scores splendid, curling strike www.youtube.com
Obviously, this has been a disappointing season for Manchester United players and fans alike. José Mourinho refuses to adapt to the new style of English football and his team has suffered as a result. It looks likely, though not definite, that the Red Devils will finish outside the Top Four for the 4th time in six seasons since legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement.
Somehow, United has clinched a spot in the Champions League Knockout Stage. An impressive victory at Juventus and a last-second winner from Marouane Fellaini against Young Boys propelled Mou's squad into the next round. It will be interesting to see how United fair in the knockout stage of the world's most illustrious football competition despite the team's poor Premier League record.
Manchester United needs a fresh start. Mourinho has proven himself right out of a job and will inevitably be fired after his team loses at home to Fulham or Huddersfield. Could former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane be brought in as Mourinho's replacement? After all, Zizou has had a massively successful managerial career, winning the Champions League title three times during his 3-year stint at the Bernabéu.
This is something I can definitely envision in the near future.
While the glory days of the 1990s and early 2000s have ended, Manchester United must reestablish itself as an intimidating club not only within England but also on an international level. The Red Devils find themselves in real flames, but the question is: who will be the one to put out the fire?
Not José Mourinho and his outdated strategies, that's for sure.