Jose Mourinho is on course for European success with Roma but could he head to Paris St-Germain?
Jose Mourinho remains on course for a sixth European final as a manager after seeing his Roma side claim a narrow 1-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen at the Stadio Olimpico in the Europa League semi-final first leg.
The Portuguese boss was hailed as the ‘King of Rome’ after guiding the Serie A side to an inaugural Europa Conference League title last term – in the process delivering the club’s first trophy in 14 years.
However, even if his bid to deliver back-to-back European titles is successful, just how long will he be in the Italian capital to bask in the adulation?
Mourinho’s contract at Roma is due to run until the summer of 2024 but in recent days there has been plenty of talk of him upping sticks this summer for an 11th managerial challenge, at Paris St-Germain.
The 60-year-old jokingly laughed off speculation on Wednesday, telling Sky Sport Italia, “If they called, they didn’t find me.”
But Roma’s hopes of reaching the Champions League appear to rest on Europa League glory, with the Giallorossi currently seventh in Italy’s top flight, so could he be tempted if the phone call comes?
‘He would like a project that is befitting his legacy
Mourinho’s record of five wins in five European finals is likely to appeal to a club that has earned a reputation for stumbling on Europe’s biggest stage.
PSG’s failure to progress past Bayern Munich in the last 16 of this term’s Champions League was just the latest painful elimination from a competition that has become an obsession since they moved into Qatari ownership in 2011, with current boss Christophe Galtier expected to leave at the end of the campaign.
And even while they may have a major restructure of their squad on their hands this summer – with the likes of Lionel Messi departing – whoever is at the helm is expected to be presented with a considerably larger transfer kitty that the nine million euros outlaid by Roma last summer.
“I think Mourinho sees Roma as a way to bounce back to another big job,” Italian football journalist James Horncastle told the Euro Leagues Podcast.
“He can quite reasonably say he has been a qualified success in that they have won their first trophy for 14 years and they are close to another European final.
“He is someone that ultimately wants to win wherever he goes and I think he feels that at Roma, unless they start changing the strategy and spending more money they are not going to be able to deliver a league title.