Like any great double-act, the other one needs their right-hand man just as much; whether it’s Ant and Dec or Mel and Sue – no one is dispensable. The exact same can be said in our beautiful game; Bryan Clough’s exploits at Leeds United say that more than anything.
The No. 1s need their most trusted and able alongside, and that’s why it’s no surprise how Jose Mourinho has kept Rui Faria, like a dog on a lead, throughout the Portuguese man’s career.
Reports coming out from Carrington, show how the pair regularly hide t-shirts and trainers, as well as the No. 1 and No. 2 pinning up funny pictures of the players around the training ground; cue the main culprit, arise, Sir Phil Jones…
— wabel nazer (@Wabel) November 25, 2011
Away from Jones being able to pull a funnier face than those Snapchat addicts – who seem to always put a ‘story’ up if a new filter is to be added on the software – both Faria and Mourinho are apparently at the forefront of jokes and create an atmosphere that probably seems more like Disneyland for Marcus Rashford, compared to the dictatorial minefield that was enforced under Louis van Gaal.
The ‘banter’ doesn’t stop there. It is reported that Mourinho and his sidekick dressed up in a police hat, and used an oversized yellow telephone to lead a comedic act at the Christmas party. Who’d thought that Jose could appear human and soft, after all?
With this sort of personable demeanour behind the scenes for the Red Devils, it’s clearly helped bring out the best of Paul Pogba. Everyone knows – judging by his 1213723074320739084 social media followers – that the midfielder is always up for a laugh, and if a coach can reciprocate such dressing room antics, it’s surely going to help get the midfielder ticking.
The combination of meticulously planned training, efficient scheduling, and the banter has seen Pogba flourish in his previous 10 games. For instance, according to Opta, the Frenchman has had 20 more touches in the oppositions box in his last 10 games compared to his first 10. As well as this, he’s been involved in six goals as opposed to one, and had 184 more touches.
This sort of confidence, swagger and ability to stamp his authority on games has been crucial in United’s momentum. The nine wins on the bounce will obviously be helping the mood in camp, but if Jose and Rui are to continue leading the banter bus at Carrington, we’re sure the likes of Pogba are going to appreciate the ‘human side’ to the coaches approach.