Manchester United’s improvement since Ole Gunner Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho in December has been nothing short of remarkable.
The Red Devils were sixth in the Premier League table when Solskjaer was appointed on a caretaker basis, 11 points adrift of the top four with a goal difference of zero.
Fast-forward two-and-a-half months and United now sit fourth in the table with a goal difference of plus 20. The turnaround in their form has been extraordinary.
Solskjaer, who is currently ‘on loan’ to the Premier League giants from Molde, is now expected to get the Man Utd job on a permanent basis.
However, Tottenham’s Mauricio Pochettino remains a potential candidate if United fail to finish the season inside the top four.
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Mourinho, meanwhile, is currently working as a pundit for various international broadcasters while he weighs up his options.
The Portuguese coach is being linked with a return to Real Madrid, whose current head coach Santiago Solari has just lost two Clasicos in the space of four days.
Mourinho provided analysis on Sunday’s Premier League action for beIN Sports and made some interesting comments regarding Fulham’s decision to replace Claudio Ranieri with the inexperienced Scott Parker.
While making his point that it’s a risk for Fulham and that the Cottagers won’t get a better manager than Ranieri, he compared the situation to United appointing Solskjaer and said he doubts these changes work in the long term.
“Can [Fulham] get a better manager than Claudio? Not at all,” Mourinho said.
“Can you compare the experience between Claudio and Scott, who is going to coach a team for the first time? Not at all.
“But sometimes in football, and you have the example with my former club [Man Utd hiring Solskjaer], that sometimes changes on the immediate - I don’t believe too much in these changes in the long term - but these changes on the immediate, there are sometimes some positive results.
“I think the game today [v Chelsea] is a crucial game for them. No victory, relegation.”
Watch Mourinho give his opinion in full here…
Basically, he’s suggesting that both Fulham and Man Utd may have been better off in the long run sticking rather than twisting.
He accepts that an appointment like Solskjaer’s can lead to an ‘immediate’ bounce but isn’t convinced United will benefit further down the line.
Time will tell, Jose.