José Mourinho has confided in close friends that his move to Manchester United to replace Louis van Gaal in the summer is a “done deal”, according to several reports in the British press.
Manchester United have been largely underwhelming this season, and a place in the top four looks highly unlikely given the Red Devils’ form as well as the quality of the current top four. A managerial change in the summer seems like a certainty at this stage, and it appears José Mourinho had already landed the Old Trafford role.
Recent reports in the British press suggested that the Premier League giants held talks with Mourinho’s representatives to discuss the Portuguese replacing Louis van Gaal in the summer, and today’s backpages in England feature an even more interesting story on the topic.
According to the Telegraph, the former Chelsea manager is convinced that the job is his, and has reportedly said as much to close friends. The story by Matt Law quotes a “well-placed source” as saying: “Mourinho’s going to Manchester United. It’s a done deal. Chelsea is the only big job up for grabs.”
If true, the move would come as little surprise to anyone given the former Inter Milan manager’s preference to continue coaching in England, as also United’s need to go toe to toe with Manchester City, who announced the appointment of Pep Guardiola earlier this month.
Van Gaal can have no complaints
If the Dutchman is in fact replaced in the summer, he can have very few complaints. Tasked with establishing a philosophy over the three years of his contract before handing over the reigns to Ryan Giggs, the 64-year-old has not only failed to do that, but has also not achieved anything extraordinary by way of results.
A top four finish in 2014-2015 season was the bare minimum expected, but it looks as though the Red Devils have taken a step backwards this season. Failing to qualify for the knock-out stages of the Champions League would have been an embarrassment, and that will only be compounded if the club fail to finish in the Premier League’s top four.
Even if they do somehow manage to scrape through, there have been enough negatives this season to suggest that a change at the top might be beneficial for Manchester United, and Mourinho’s record in the league as well as in Europe suggests he is the ideal candidate to take over.