Jose Mourinho is the favourite to replace Louis van Gaal if Manchester United opt to sack the veteran Dutch coach over the festive period.
The revered Portuguese manager, who was dumped by Chelsea last week, is keen to return to management as soon as possible and will no doubt be hell-bent on proving his doubters wrong following his unexpected demise at Stamford Bridge.
Sensing that he could be offered the Manchester United job within a matter of days, The Sun understand Mourinho is preparing for his next potential challenge by watching all of the Red Devils’ matches from the current season so far “in forensic detail”.
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The report adds that Mourinho wants to arrive at Old Trafford “fully armed and ready to make an instant impact” and is clearly leaving no stone unturned just in case United suddenly make the call.
It’s understood that Van Gaal could be sacked as early as Boxing Day if Manchester United suffer a fourth consecutive defeat against Stoke City.
Van Gaal likely to be sacked next week
A difficult lunchtime kick-off at a cold and windy Britannia Stadium is hardly an ideal fixture for Van Gaal to save his job.
Even if Van Gaal secures an unlikely win at Stoke, though, he will still find himself out of a job two days later if United slump to defeat against Chelsea at Old Trafford.
It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that Mourinho, who has travelled back to Portugal to spend some time with his family, will be in charge of Manchester United’s first fixture of 2016 against Swansea City on January 2.
Manchester United fans: will you feel happy if Jose Mourinho replaces Louis van Gaal? Let us know by leaving a comment below.