After months of speculation, negative publicity and poor performance on the turf, Manchester United top management radically acted and sacked Head Coach Jose Mourinho. Jose, who had recently signed a new contract till 2020, was shown the door especially after a series of poor performances that culminated in the 3-1 defeat to bitter rivals Liverpool. Although the Red Devils qualified for last 16 phase in the UCL, they were beaten by Valencia which added a sour spot to the club’s illustrious history. Players within the club, including French international midfield maestro Pogba, club legends Rio Ferdinard, Paul Scholes, Andy Cole and Ryan Giggs continually showed their dissent with the gaffer’s approach to play and the negativity he brought to the game. Already, Luke Shaw, Anthony Martial and Pogba had tasted the ugly side of Mourinho, having fallen out of his favour.
As ‘The Special One,’ who has undoubtedly one of the best resumes as a manager of football exits Old Trafford, there is already a buzz on who is likely to replace him on the hot seat. The rich club history, achievements, expectations, pressure to perform by fans and executive, and the heavy investment in one of the most successful and wealthiest clubs in the world make it a challenge to any able manager to take over the reins. Looking at how rivals Chelsea, Arsenal, City and Liverpool are performing and their positions in the EPL, undoubtedly it will take more than one’s will power to bring Manchester United back from oblivion to contenders and the respect they deserve. Something was very wrong with Jose’s approach, especially with the fact that he never found a stable line-up to play with in most games. Looking back at his winning ways at Chelsea, Terry and Drogba were among his most trusted lieutenants on the pitch, and always played a key role in his EPL winning seasons. However, the top management at Manchester should take the blame with a lame and non-aggressive recruitment plan that left Jose infuriated and out of sorts on what he truly desired. Could the results have been different had he had his way? Now, we will never know.
Speculations on who will take up the hot seat have continually hit the media outlets. Zinedine Zidane (former coach, Real Madrid), Laurent Blanc former coach for PSG France, Mauricio Roberto Pochettino Trossero (current Tottenham Hotspurs) and Antonio Conte (former Chelsea FC coach) are all favorites to be managers at the end of the season. Meanwhile, as Jose Mourinho exits with a staggering £22.5 for having his contract that was extended to 2020 short, a OT legend is on the brink of taking over as the interim manager for Manchester United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who is dearly loved by fans for his impact and exploits for the team will take over the reign until the end of the season. He will be assisted by Sir Alex Ferguson former no.2, Mike Phelan. The Norwegian, who is currently the coach for Norway’s side Molde FK arrived and stayed for Manchester United for 11 incredible years, featured in 366 appearances and scored 126 goals. Signed in by Alex Ferguson in 1996, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer quickly developed reputation as a super-sub, and it all culminated with the crucial goal he scored against Bayern Munich in UCL Finals, at Barcelona in 1999. His incredible contributions made Manchester United England first treble winners ever in soccer history. He was part of the Red Devils that was dominant in domestic and international competitions, whose exploits and records stand out to date.