By Daniel Teo
Having had one single trophy - the Copa del Rey - to show for since taking over as Real Madrid coach last summer, this season could prove to be a make-or-break one for one of the most celebrated but and controversial managers in world football.
Unchanged from day one of his appointment at the Santiago Bernabeu, the mission given to him by the success-hungry Madrid hierarchy has been clear - to overtake their bitter Catalan rivals as the best team in Spain and Europe.
But with Barcelona well-nigh unstoppable, the Portuguese, unaccustomed to prolonged failure, has had to swallow his pride.
And that has obviously taken a huge toll on him - both physically and mentally.
His disgraceful antics in the Spanish Supercopa against Pep Guardiola's side, where he was alleged to have poked Barcelona assistant coach Tito Vilanova's in his eye, shows a man who was once determined but is now unhealthily obsessed with winning. To be fair, he has probably the toughest job in football.
And considering Real Madrid have had an astonishing 11 different managers Florentino Pérez took over as club president in 2000, time is running out for him to deliver what the club have long been craving for.
The last time the Los Blancos lifted the La Liga crown was back in 2008 and you have to go back a decade for their last European Cup triumph.
While Perez has been supportive in the transfer market, spending exorbitant fees on big-name players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Zinedine Zidane, Luís Figo and David Beckham, he has been equally ruthless in sending managers packing.
Vicente del Bosque, despite winning two La Liga titles and two Champions League titles, was not spared the axe. Fabio Capello was shown little mercy as well, given the boot after just one season in charge despite winning the La Liga during his second spell at the Bernabeu.
It all points to a trial by fire for Mourinho, who could face a harsh and ego-bruising reality check should he fail in his mission to displace Barcelona off their perch both domestically and in Europe.
Real Madrid managers in the past decade:
Vicente del Bosque (Nov 1999-June 2003)
P 233 W 127 D 56 L 50
Win % 54.41
Honours: La Liga (2), UEFA Champions League (2), Supercopa de Espana (2), UEFA Super Cup, Intercontinental Cup
Carlos Queiroz (June 2003-May 2004)
P 59 W 34 D 11 L 14
Win % 57.63
Honours: Supercopa de Espana
Jose Antonio Camacho (June 2004-July 2004)
P 6 W 4 D 0 L 2
Win % 66.67
Mariano Garcia Remon (July 2004-Dec 2004)
P 20 W 12 D 4 L 4
Win % 60
Vanderlei Luxemburgo (Dec 2004-Dec 2005)
P 45 W 28 D 7 L 10
Win % 62.22
Juan Ramon Lopez Caro (Dec 2005-July 2006)
P 48 W 23 D 13 L 12
Win % 47.92
Fabio Capello (July 2006-June 2007)
P 50 W 28 D 12 L 10
Win % 56
Honours: La Liga
Bernd Schuster (July 2007-Dec 2008)
P 75 W 44 D 9 L 22
Win % 58.67
Honours: La Liga, Supercopa de Espana
Juande Ramos (Dec 2008-June 2009)
P 27 W 18 D 1 L 8
Win % 66.67
Manuel Pellegrini (July 2009-May 2010)
P 48 W 36 D 5 L 7
Jose Mourinho (May 2010-present)
P 62 W 45 D 10 L 7
Win % 72.58
Honours: Copa del Rey