Thursday 27 October 2016

Mourinho wants vow of silence as leaks threaten to scupper Man United job

Published 21/02/2016 | 13:17

Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho has ordered his advisers to make no further public comment on his links with the Manchester United’s manager’s job, understands.

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Sources close to Mourinho have been active in leaking information confirming his interest in the United job and revealing the preliminary talks they held with Old Trafford chiefs last month, but the former Chelsea boss fears additional publicity could scupper his chances of landing the Old Trafford hot-seat.

Mourinho is said to be ‘embarrassed’ by his continued links with United while his friend and former mentor Louis van Gaal remains in place and will only confirm his interest in the job publicly if the Dutchman leaves.

Now Mourinho has told his advisers to follow his vow of silence on his links with United as he aims to win over members of the Old Trafford board who remain vehemently against his appointment as Van Gaal’s successor.

Mourinho was in Italy yesterday as he watched his former club Inter Milan in action and he used the trip to reiterate that he will not return to the Serie A club as manager next season.

Subsequent comments from the sister of former Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti appeared to suggest the Portuguese tactician expects to be taking over at United next season, as she hinted a deal may already have been struck.

“Right now he’s happy, he’s going to Manchester,” stated Bedy Moratti.

Mourinho also used his trip to Italy to confirm that he would not be returning as Inter Milan manager next season, despite reports in recent days that he was being lined up to take over from Roberto Mancini at the San Siro.

Van Gaal’s next big test as United boss will come when his side take on Shrewsbury in the FA Cup fifth round on Monday night, but it seems increasingly likely that his days as the club’s manager are coming to an end sooner rather than later.

Senior members of the United hierarchy remain determined to block Mourinho’s coronation as the club’s next manager, but there is a growing sense that those voices will be overlooked by a club eager to restore their reputation as trophies winners on the world stage in double quick time.

Van Gaal could remain in place as United boss until the club can no longer qualify for the Champions League, with the contractual pay-off he could expect to receive reduced if he fails to secure a return to Europe’s elite competition for next season.

The club followed as similar path when they opted to dismiss David Moyes, with his departure confirmed shortly after United were mathematically ruled out of a top four finish in April 2014.

Fresh reports on Sunday claimed that Ryan Giggs remains the popular choice among some of United’s hierarchy to step.

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