The great Save El Tigre From Extinction Project (SETFEP) will officially start only later this week, but project lead Jose Mourinho has been busy laying the groundwork in the media, trying to set the narrative and control expectations. Commendable as that may be, it seems that SETFEP is relying on a very limited set of often out-of-date information, which could easily prove disastrous when we're confronted with the harsh reality. ("We were so wrong!")
"I spoke with John and Gary a lot about him and we think the bright movement is there. The movement to get freedom in the box to score goals is there."
Asking John Terry about bright movement is a bit like asking the Titanic about turning radii. Why yes, that oil tanker is extremely nimble, boss! (I would've poked fun at Gary Cahill here, too, but I decided to back down from that challenge; maybe later?)
"Our players had difficulty to control him and we feel the potential is there. Let's see if he can improve his confidence, his happiness."
Confidence is still a very scary word, especially prefaced with a "let's see if..." Thanks, Fernando!
"At Porto, he was very good. When he was at Atletico [Madrid] and when I was in Real Madrid he was good, so there were a few years where I was watching him all the time."
You know what else was good two years ago? Two-year-old beer.
"We have a good community of Portuguese-speaking people, plus the guys who were with him in Atletico, Diego Costa and Filipe Luis. Let's see if this situation can help him."
Well, this certainly sounds like a foolproof plan. Sign a man struggling for confidence, yearning for happiness, and craving for appreciation for a role that is likely to generate very little confidence, happiness, and appreciation. When exactly are we going to give him the minutes he'd need to rediscover all these qualities, provided they aren't all extinct already?
While I understand the reasoning for not going after any big-name, big-money signings this summer — even though I have a bad feeling about all that as well — the Falcao deal makes even less sense. Sure, we probably have nothing to lose other than money and perhaps a bit of pride, but why sign a player in need of low-pressure situations, tons of minutes with no expectations, and lots of cuddles be a backup? And if he's not going to be just third choice, why are we kicking out a player with whose movement our center backs had issues prior to his arrival as well, but one who's also been a proven goalscorer over the last couple years?
Unlike Gary Cahill, there is no last ditch
tackle joke here to save the day.