Real Madrid CF president Florentino Pérez has announced that coach José Mourinho will leave the nine-time European champions by mutual agreement at the end of the season.
"The club and the manager agree the time is right to bring our association to an end," Pérez said in a short statement on Monday. "We wish him all the best." The news comes three days after the Merengues were beaten in the Copa del Rey final by Club Atlético de Madrid, their last chance this term to add to the Spanish Super Cup won at the beginning of the campaign.
Madrid conceded their Liga title to rivals FC Barcelona and against Borussia Dortmund suffered UEFA Champions League semi-final defeat for the third season running under the Portuguese tactician. Mourinho, 50, will end his tenure after the final two games of the season against Real Sociedad de Fútbol and, on 1 June, CA Osasuna. Madrid are already guaranteed second place behind Barcelona.
Mourinho will depart with a Copa del Rey win under his belt from his first campaign, and fond memories of the record-breaking Liga campaign that following in 2011/12, when his side became the first team to break the 100-point barrier, scoring 121 goals as they stormed to the title. They could not return to those unprecedented heights this season.
"We would like to thank him for the leap in competitiveness [Mourinho has overseen]," added Pérez. "We have made a very important jump in terms of quality both on the sporting and competitive fronts. Today, Madrid are where they should be. We endured six years of elimination in the last 16 of the Champions League; now we are among the top four teams in Europe."
It is only 11 years since Mourinho announced his arrival at FC Porto by promising the side would be champions the following year. He delivered, also lifting the UEFA Cup in his first full season with the Dragons, eclipsing that 12 months later when he oversaw UEFA Champions League glory.
He moved to Chelsea FC, proclaimed himself "the special one" and lived up to that, guiding them to their first English championship in 50 years. In 2008 it was on to FC Internazionale Milano, where he steered the Nerazzurri to back-to-back titles and, in 2010, the UEFA Champions League, before taking the reins at Madrid.
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