With five league championships in three different leagues (Portugal, England, Italy), a European Cup and numerous domestic cups, the manager that started the noughties at Benfica and ended up at Internazionale can hardly be accused of not being a winner.
Replacing Jupp Heynces and turning down a request from the legendary Bobby Robson to join him at Newcastle as his assistant, Mourinho started the decade in a situaton of flux and politics at Benfica. It was only after leading Lieira to a highest ever fifth place finish in the Portugeese Liga in 2001 that Mourinho's worth as a promising coach was established.
Mourinho joined Porto midway through the season in 2002. After making some shrewd signings like Paolo Ferreira and Maniche, Porto were to achieve a spectacular season in 2003, winning a UEFA Cup, League and Portugeese Cup treble. The points total achieved that year was a record in the league. In 2004, Mourinho arguably topped that with a League and European Cup double. Porto may well be the last team to ever win the CL outside England, Spain and Italy again.
For his troubles, UEFA and IFFHS awarded Mouinho their manager of the year distinction in both of his trophy laden years with Porto.
A lucrative move to Chelsea followed. Mourinho quickly replaced Ranieri's also ran mindset at Chelsea with a winning mentality and some excellent signings in the form of Didier Drogba and known stalwarts Ricardo Carvalho and Paulo Ferreira. The ambitious and cocky young coach became a darling of the media ( 2005 BBC Sports Personality Coach Award, New Stateman 2005 'Man of the Year').
The club broke several records en route to a league and league cup double in 2005. Liverpool's controversial semi-final victory stopped Mourinho making a thirrd consecutive European Cup final appearence. A second league followed. Mourinho was PL manager of the year in 2005 and 2006.
However things started to go wrong at Chelsea. Increasingly, Roman Abramovich started making decisions on team signings (like flop Andriy Shevchenko for example) while politics at the club spiled over into team performance. Despite winning a league cup and FA cup double, Mourinho's days looked numbered.
Finally late in 2007 Mourinho departed.
Replacing Roberto Mancini at Inter, given an open cheque book and a brief to win European prestige with Moratti, Mourinho has so far struggled to live up to expectations. This is a great challenge no doubt and the signing of Wesley Sneijder has changed a title winning team. Is it enough? Mourinho has faced greater challenges before.
With tactical acumen, great eye for talent, excellent man management, leadership and motivational skills as well as the ability to become incredibly close to his players, and most importantly (as he himself would argue) the ability to deliver silverware, Mourinho edges Alex Ferguson as the greatest manager of the decade.