Chelsea’s Portuguese manager changed his approach halfway into the season and won his third championship with the Stamford Bridge club.
The Blues wrapped up the 2014-2015 Premier League title with a victory against Crystal Palace on Sunday afternoon. This year’s campaign lacked the real contest as the only really consistent side was Chelsea throughout the season. To achieve that, Jose Mourinho only had to perform a small step back by pulling his usual tricks making sure that his team will concede less than a goal per games in average and that Stamford Bridge remains a fortress. After the spectacular start they had, they switched to a defensive stance waiting for mistakes from the opposition and winning most of their games becoming a side the audience of the internet betting in the UK can rely on.
A season of opposing halves
It is no wonder that neither of the English teams were able to make it to the quarterfinals of the Champions League, as they all struggled to maintain their form throughout the season. This is a playground designed for Jose Mourinho however, who, armed with a strong squad capable of quality football and solid defending, went all the way without sticking to spectacular football.
Eden Hazard, Chelsea’s hard working magician became player of the year of course and with Cesc Fabregas in the team, they showed a few flashes of brilliance in the first half of the campaign. Mourinho claimed last year that they had to make a step further if they wanted to fight for the title. After the acquisition of Fabregas and Diego Costa they started this season dominating most of their games by proactive and creative football.
• Chelsea went defensive
• Title vital for Mourinho
• Best package in England
And about halfway into the campaign, a dip in form obviously came, as no team is able to play 50 games in a season on the same level, as anyone who internet betting in the UK might know. Mourinho then switched back to his usual ways and settled for the reactive football that characterized most of his years as a football manager. With the sound defending, that is always a feature at his teams, Chelsea conceded only 27 goals in 35 games, the fewest in the league.
They sat back, waited for the opposition’s errors and won many games without dominating possession and virtually without chances. Since he took the managing job at Porto in 2002, Mourinho delivered the league title usually in his first seasons at every team he signed for, and where he wasn’t able to that, he was champion in his second year, like at Real Madrid and at Chelsea in his current spell.
Chelsea to defend their title?
At Real he needed more time because of the dominance of Pep Guardiola’s Barca and now at Chelsea because of the transition he had to supervise by arranging the team to his taste. He was not far from capturing the title last year as all the top teams apart from Arsenal were in a transition period too. However Man City’s Manuel Pellegrini and – against mobile betting odds – Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool performed clearly better than them.
But before this year Chelsea were favourites to win the league and accomplishing that might be vital for Mourinho, as it is not sure whether Roman Abramovic would have tolerated two seasons without a major trophy or not. He had two years to build a team that is the best in England and his principles helped him to achieve that. All the teams placed from two to eight on the Premier League table might have been playing beautiful, possession-based football, however, as neither of those were convincing, Mourinho’s negative approach provided the title once again.
And according to online betting trends, he has all the chances to make it two in a row. Arsenal and Manchester United clearly have the potential to fight for the title next year, however they seem to remain vulnerable against teams confident in their reactive ways of playing football. A change in management is possible at City bringing another period of transition to the Etihad Stadium, while Liverpool need to spend big even to be in contention for Champions League football.
The package consisting Chelsea and Mourinho is the best available at the moment. So, if no dramatic changes will occur and most of the Blues’ players will remain healthy while still remembering how to play this game, they will be in pole position to start the race for a title that would be the sixth in the history of Chelsea. Now they have five, and Mourinho played his part in getting three of those.