José Mourinho kisses the Conference League trophy. (Photo: Thanassis Stavrakis/AP)
At an age when many workers in Europe are beginning to plan their retirement, José Mourinho seems unwilling to retire any time soon, but instead continues to write history, now driving Rome. The Italian capital team became the champion of the novel Conference League defeat 1 to 0 a Feyenoord at last played in Tirana and so the Portuguese added his fifth continental title and became the only winner in three club competitions organized by UEFA.
As he did in the old UEFA Cup with Porto in 2003, in the Champions League with the Portuguese team in 2004 and with Inter in 2010, and in the Europa League with Manchester United in 2017, Mourinho accepted a European trophy, in this opportunity in charge of a team that has never won an international title (beyond the dead Fairs Cup, not recognized by UEFA, in 1961) and that has given up on its two previous finals: against Liverpool in the 1984 Champions Cup and against at Inter in the 1991 UEFA cup.
To reach this festival, the Roman cast will have to travel the path of 15 games closed to the first final of a club tournament played on the land of Albania. In the old days where inaccuracies and rudeness prevailed, the wolf He took advantage of the 32nd minute in a maneuver that seemed risk-free: after Gianluca Mancini’s frontal cross, Austrian Gernot Trauner failed in his header attempt and left the ball to Nicolò Zaniolo to identify goalkeeper Justin Bijlow.
Marcos Senesi fought Englishman Tammy Abraham. (Photo: Antonio Calanni / AP)
And before celebrating, Mourinho also had to watch his team surrender the ball, dangerously coming back and enduring the ongoing siege from Feyenoord. The first 20 minutes of the second period were a flipper game in the Italian area and if the goal defended by Rui Patricio did not fall it was due to the good response of the Portuguese goalkeeper and some assists from the left post.
Mou then brought in his new staff and removed his team from confinement and moved the game away from their risk zone. The Dutch cast, with the Argentine national team’s new defender Marcos Senesi behind it, has lost clarity, unable to find the tools to supply Belgian Cyriel Dessers, the top scorer in this tournament (he scored 10), and no guts. in the first minutes saw the opportunity to add to his fourth continental crown lost (he won the Champions Cup in 1970 and the UEFA Cup in 1974 and 2002).
This title in Rome is the first for an Italian team in a European competition since Inter won the 2010 Champions League, certainly under Mourinho’s command. For Special Onewhich will be 60 in January, is his 26th title in a 22-year career with six teams from four countries (Porto, Inter, Real Madrid, Chelsea, Manchester United and Roma).
When the Roma squad arrived at the final venue on Tuesday, they were greeted by a banner hanging in front of the University of Tirana with a picture of their manager riding a Vespa motorbike. “Welcome to Little Roma, Mister Mourinho,” read the banner. When Mou says “addio” to the Albanian capital, which is separated from the cities of Romulus and Remus by 600 kilometers and by the Adriatic Sea, he will do so with another trophy on his resume.
The Roma squad celebrated after receiving the trophy identifying the Italian club as Conference League champions. (Photo: Antonio Calanni / AP)