Real Madrid: Jose Mourinho's Biggest Contributions
Florentino Perez described the decision to appoint Jose Mourinho as his most important one.
I will try to pick the top five contributions Mourinho made since arriving to Madrid.
Getting Rid of the Old Guard
Upon arriving to Madrid, Jose Mourinho started making his mark on Los Blancos almost instantly.
The tough task of rebuilding the complete squad was neglected for years until the "Special One" finally arrived. The time when Raul, Guti and Co. were tearing up almost every defence in the world had long passed but no one had enough authority to tell them the sad truth.
Seven players were sold during the first season, a clear indication that a squad rebuilding was on its way.
Buying Young and Cheap Players
Getting rid of the older, ineffective players left a huge hole on the squad sheet. Finally Mourinho could start making his own team built of completely new, younger players.
A number of young players soon arrived to Madrid including Mesut Ozil, Angel Di Maria and Sami Khedira for a total fee of around $80 million.
A number of questions were raised on their ability to lead Los Blancos to a desperately needed league title, but Mourinho believed in the youngsters which soon started paying off.
A completely new Real Madrid was born.
Sticking with Karim Benzema
The problem of under-performing Karim Benzema was inherited from the last manager.
The pressure was piling up on Mourinho, as he refused to sell the Frenchman despite his awful start to the 2010/11 season. Once again Mourinho remained true to himself by not giving up under the pressure from both the president and the fans.
He continued believing in Benzema even when it seemed laughable. And Benzema soon regained his confidence and started scoring on all fronts, finishing the season with 31 goals and 12 assists to his name.
This season Benzema became the focal point of the team's attack. The awful injury sustained against CSKA Moscow kept him out from the team for quite some time. It affected the team badly and they started struggling against the likes of Rayo Vallecano and Real Betis.
Accommodating Cristiano Ronaldo
Although Ronaldo is mainly playing as a winger, he won the Pichichi trophy last season and is on his way to his second consecutive Pichichi.
Sure, he was playing decently before the arrival of Mourinho, but he reached new heights when Mourinho came to Real Madrid.
Ronaldo scored 102 goals and assisted 33 more in only 104 matches, which makes him one of the most prolific goal scorers in the history of the club.
Revival of El Clasicos
Before Mourinho arrived, the fans started getting used to losing against Barcelona. The matches were becoming dull, leaving the fans frustrated at the end of almost every El Clasico.
The "Special One" has not won many El Clasicos, but he returned the passion and revived the rivalry. His unusual and controversial decisions and actions were recognized as a clear sign of will to win. He attracted the media attention and shielded the players from scrutiny.
Although the team is still behind in the direct matches, Real Madrid now has a much more positive approach to El Clasicos.
The legacy of Mourinho is already great, but he will be remembered as one of the greatest tacticians in the game only if he manages to bring the illustrious 10th Champions League title to Madrid.
Thanks for reading! Let me know if I forgot any contribution.