Speculation has been surrounding Jose Mourinho’s future at Real Madrid for roughly the entire season. But recent rumors have hinted that the Portuguese tactician has officially decided not to return next year.
Rumors first made their way around when tensions began to rise between Mourinho and Madrid’s long-standing captains, Iker Casillas and Sergio Ramos.
The Mirror reported in December that Mourinho had reached his breaking point in Madrid. After dust-ups with Ramos and Casillas, it looked as though the manager had no chance of returning for another season.
Fox Soccer was next to hit the headlines when they released a rumor that Mourinho and Florentino Perez could have already agreed for the two parties to part ways.
However, the exit rumors were short-lived.
Jose Mourinho came out to squash the rumors personally before the turn of the new year. According to the Daily Mail, the Special One voiced his opinion that he would not be leaving Madrid anytime soon.
But just when it appeared as though the rumors of his departure were finally over, Real Madrid was forced to move in hopes of calming even more unsettling rumors.
Florentino Perez conducted an emergency media announcement in January amid reports that some players had given the president an ultimatum (via ESPN).
Soon, even the players of Real Madrid were gathering to silence the rumors that there had been a secret meeting to get rid of the Portuguese manager (via the Telegraph).
No matter where the rumors originate from or how much truth they hold, it continues to be Jose Mourinho himself who keeps the media afloat.
With the constant rumors that Mourinho would not remain in Madrid, clubs began to jump at the chance of bringing in the successful manager.
PSG was the first club to really hit the headlines in December when they admitted that they were interested in both Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo (via the Daily Mail). But the links have not quelled yet, as only a few days ago the Mirror reported that the French outfit was ready to make a bid for the duo.
Chelsea has also been in the discussion of where Mourinho could end up. The Sun believes that Mourinho has selected a Chelsea return as his next move, but there is yet to be any solid proof to this point.
Just today there has been a constantly breaking story that Mourinho has officially agreed to part ways at the end of the season. The following tweets from very reliable sources have been on top of the developing story all day.
‘Mourinho to leave no matter what’ http://t.co/BqwzkKAK7S2013-3-11 14:58:49
Tom Conn @ThomasMConn
Real Madrid and Mourinho reportedly agree to mutually part ways at season's end http://t.co/zZsNIXGASV #Mourinho #RealMadrid2013-3-11 06:45:21
Tom Conn @ThomasMConn
#Mourinho has agreed terms with his new club http://t.co/zZsNIXGASV #RealMadrid2013-3-11 15:41:07
But why should fans now begin to believe these rumors after hearing different sides all season? The saga now seems to be coming to an end, and it appears as though rumors are now slowly turning into reports.
La Liga expert Ben Crump gave his take on why the absence of a report from Madrid to stop the rumors could hint at the stories being true.
Ben Crump @BenCrump84
Reference Mourinho story: No Florentino Perez 'EMERGENCY' press conference over this one. True then? #Mourinho #RealMadrid2013-3-11 15:44:30
There has yet to be an official word or confirmation from either party. Rumors are continuing to pick up pace, and it looks increasingly likely Mourinho will not be on the Real Madrid bench once the current season ends.
But if the rumors are proven to be true, the news comes at the worst possible time for Los Blancos. After demolishing Barcelona twice and advancing in the Champions League over Manchester United, this is not the time to hear that your manager is leaving.
There is sure to be more on the developing story as the week progresses, but it is clear that a decision on Mourinho’s future must be made soon.
Should Jose Mourinho remain in Madrid? Would Real Madrid be wise to let the manager leave? Don’t forget to leave your thoughts and comments below.
Tre’ Atkinson. Follow me on Twitter for more discussions on Real Madrid and La Liga.