Man United to appoint Mourinho
London: Manchester United are set to appoint Jose Mourinho as their new manager, BBC Sport understands.
It is believed a deal with the 53-year-old Portuguese was agreed in principle before United’s FA Cup final win against Crystal Palace on Saturday. With United failing to qualify for the Champions League under Louis van Gaal, the Old Trafford hierarchy is thought to have decided a change is required. Mourinho has been out of work since he was sacked by Chelsea in December. The club plan to announce his arrival early next week after telling Van Gaal, 64, his reign has come to an end.
Van Gaal remains defiant
In the post-match news conference following United’s FA Cup win, the Dutchman said: “I show you the cup and I don’t discuss it [my future] with my friends of the media, who already sacked me for six months. Which manager can do what I have done?” When pressed on whether he will be at Old Trafford as manager of United next season, he replied: “I hope to see you. I don’t want to talk about leaving this club.” The Dutchman still has one season remaining on his three-year deal, but despite spending £250m on new players, his tenure has disappointed many fans, the club finishing fourth and then fifth in the Premier League.
Mourinho remains silent
Van Gaal’s grip on his job has seemed increasingly fragile this season, with Mourinho known to covet the task of masterminding a revival at United three years after legendary former manager Sir Alex Ferguson stepped down. The Portuguese was at heavyweight boxer David Haye’s win in London on Saturday evening but repeatedly declined to comment on whether he was about to succeed Van Gaal. Mourinho is one of the game’s most successful coaches, winning three league titles in his two spells at Stamford Bridge, as well as guiding Porto and Inter Milan to Champions League victories in 2004 and 2010 respectively.