The Manchester United board has sacked Jose Mourinho after the defeat against Liverpool left the club closer to the relegation zone than the top of a league they used to dominate.
After 20+ years, Manchester United’s appointment policy has become dandelion-like after the board sack Jose Mourinho despite handing him a new contract at the turn of the year.
When Sir Alex Ferguson left, the 55-year-old, was one of the favourites to replace him before the club decided the long-term future of United lay in the hands of David Moyes.
Look what happened to him.
Back to Mourinho, and in those days, many felt he was the best in the business, if not second to Pep Guardiola, but what now? First Chelsea showed him the door, and now United have done the same thing.
Is he finished, washed up on a desert island like an old pirate with a wooden leg?
As a fan of the club, it’s the right decision at the right time. After the failure of Moyes and Louis van Gaal to continue the traditions and high expectations created by Ferguson, I thought Mourinho was a dream appointment.
It turned into a nightmare.
I will always remember United’s pre-season build-up, with Mourinho telling the press that we had no chance; ill-prepared, and without the 3-4 signings he demanded of his board – we had no hope.
His ramblings against his clubs’ decision to back him, and his public outbursts against his players, most notably Paul Pogba, Alexis Sanchez, Antonio Valencia and Anthony Martial turned United from an institution of great pride and glory to an embarrassment.
The axe finally came after United lost to Liverpool on the weekend, leaving them 19-points adrift of their arch-rivals, and that’s closer to the relegation zone than to a summit that used to have the Red Devils’ flag planted in the soil.
Mourinho replaced van Gaal at the club in May 2016, and spent £400m on the likes of Paul Pogba £89m from Juventus, Fred £47m from Shakhtar Donetsk, Nemanja Matic £40m from Chelsea, Eric Bailly £30m from Villareal, Henrik Mkhitaryan £26.3m from Dortmund and Alexis Sanchez (the Mkhitaryan swap deal), with only Matic being a success.
The former Special One won the League Cup and Europa League during his tenure, but this is a club that needs to be winning the Premier League and Champions League.
United has only won one of their previous six league games, and their tally of 26-points after 17-games is their worst performance since 1990/91. Mourinho did manage to guide United into the Round of 16 where they face a stern test against Paris Saint-Germain, and they will have to face Neymar and co., with a caretaker manager at the helm.
The smart money is on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer who is currently managing Molde in Norway. Mourinho’s assistant, Michael Carrick, is also in contention.
United has confirmed that they will not appoint a successor until the start of next season prompting speculation that the next person to try and fill the boots of Sir Alex is already committed to a club with Mauricio Pochettino the top of that list.
The Odds for the Next Man Utd Manager
Ole Gunnar Solksjaer 1/2
Zinedine Zidane 4/1
Laurent Blanc 13/2
Michael Carrick 10/1
Mauricio Pochettino 14/1