The tenure of Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid was a torrid affair to say the least. While Champions League football was lacking and elusive, the Portuguese gaffer secured the La Liga title ahead of Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona, a brilliant achievement.
Always eager for world-class football, the three-year tenure saw him make 13 signings, and let us have a look at how they panned out:
1. Angel Di Maria
Signed from Benfica in 2010, the promising Argentinian moved to Manchester United, had a sorry spell at Old Trafford, and currently plays at PSG. Regardless, a truly talented sighting by Mourinho.
2. Mesut Ozil
The German whose name would become synonymous with playmaking, Ozil would prove to be a crucial presence in Madrid’s squad till 2013, when he would depart for Arsenal, the location where he still functions.
3. Sami Khedira
Currently playing at Juventus, the German was another World Cup star that Mourinho signed in 2010. A midfielder that provided much stability to the squad, Khedira was an inseparable part of Madrid till 2015.
4. Ricardo Carvalho
A reunion signing that ended along with Mourinho’s departure, the defender had a mixed spell at the Bernabeu. He’s the only player in this list who has now retired, with the Portuguese international hanging his boots in 2010.
5. Sergio Canales
A wonder-kid that simply didn’t live up to the hype, the attacking midfielder was one of the lesser-known players of the Mourinho era, and now plays for Betis.
6. Pedro Leon
With a mere 14 appearances during his tenure, this is another name that failed at Madrid, and a return to Getafe was imminent, despite two goals being netted.
7. Emmanuel Adebayor
Mourinho’s sole loan signing, the Tottenham Hotspur striker found 8 goals in 22 appearances before returning to England. He now plays for Istanbul Basaksehir.
8. Jose Callejon
A player that succeeded after moving away from Madrid, Callejon has since found 74 goals for Napoli, while his spell under Mourinho saw him struggle significantly for game time.
9. Nuri Sahin
Now with Borussia Dortmund, Sahin was a player whose promise in Spain was spoiled by a string of injuries, resulting in frequent offloading till 2014 saw him reunited with the German club.
10. Raphael Varane
Arguably Mourinho’s finest defensive signing in hindsight, the brilliant centre-back still plies his trade for Real Madrid. Still only 25 years of age, his purchase was a true masterstroke, added by his World Cup with France this summer.
11. Fabio Coentrao
Another player who is still on Madrid’s pay-grade. The promising left-back has always struggled under the shadow of the technically superior Marcelo.
12. Luka Modric
Another phenomenal success story, the Croatian is arguably the backbone of modern-day Madrid, and was truly a world-class capture by Mourinho, despite his initial playing days being piled with criticism.
13. Diego Lopez
The goalkeeper from Sevilla who was the reason behind Mourinho’s biggest mistake at Madrid- dropping Iker Casillas from the starting lineup. This was also the decision that marked the end of his tenure at Real Madrid. Lopez currently plies his trade at Espanyol after a brief stint at AC Milan.