Lately, Jose Mourinho has found it difficult to avoid certain persistent topics in his pre and post-match press conferences.
Speaking ahead of Manchester United's first-leg tie against Sevilla tomorrow night, attention was once again drawn to the question of Paul Pogba and where the relationship between player and manager currently stands.
A well-worn issue that will only find resolution if/when Pogba's performances for Manchester United improve, the alternative issue of "tactics" is one about which Mourinho still has the ability to talk about in an enlightening manner.
Sevilla's Italian manager Vincenzo Montella highlighted the 'pioneering' role the Portuguese played in football tactics in his own press conference, and, with United objectively expected to make short work of a Sevilla side that has had its troubles this season, the former Real Madrid boss is under no such impression:
I don’t think it’s possible to score six here. It takes Ronaldo or Messi in their best days to smash goals here. Betis in the derby was a one-off.
Montella is Italian, and Italians know how to organise their teams defensively.
Mourinho's ability to organise a team for such occasions has become something of a trademark for the Portuguese throughout his managerial career.
Most famously perhaps, it was while managing in Italy himself that such talents were espoused to most devastating effect; Inter Milan's defeat of Barcelona in the semi-final of the 2010 Champions League a momentous achievement given the objective assessment of Guardiola's side throughout this period.
Such a 'win-at-all-costs' attitude as that which permeates Italian football does not operate in England to such a degree, and, given Mourinho's increasingly difficult relationship with some quarters of the English press, the often turgid style of football his United style play has given many reason to question Mourinho's effectiveness; not that he is taking this lying down:
In England some experts who never sit on the bench say defenders should never defend, midfielders should always attack, that’s only in England with this generation of experts.
United will be looking to reach the quarter-final of the Champions League for the first time since the 2013/14 season when under the management of David Moyes, United went out to Bayern Munich.