Jose Mourinho leaves Manchester United

Manchester United have confirmed Jose Mourinho has left the club, but they will not appoint a permanent successor until the summer.

The 55-year-old Portuguese has been with the club for two-and-half years, winning the Europa League and League Cup – but this season has seen United endure their worse start to a season this century.

United’s board had already decided that Mourinho would be leaving in the summer, but the weekend’s heavy loss to arch-rivals Liverpool has seen the move brought forward.

United’s statement read: “Manchester United announces that manager Jose Mourinho has left the club with immediate effect.

“The club would like to thank Jose for his work during his time at Manchester United and to wish him success in the future.

“A new caretaker manager will be appointed until the end of the current season, while the club conducts a thorough recruitment process for a new, full-time manager.”

Bookmakers believe that former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane and Tottenham’s Mauricio Pochettino are most likely to be appointed Mourinho’s successor in the summer.

Zidane is the current 2/1 favourite to be next permanent manager.  Pochettino follows him at 3/1, with both currently accounting for over 70% of bets on the market.

Former United defender Laurent Blanc has been backed into 3/1 as he is in contention to be named caretaker manager ahead of Michael Carrick at 5/1.

Next in the betting are Antonio Conte at 12./1 with Massimiliano Allegri and Eddie Howe less likely at 20/1.

Spokesman Paddy Power said: “Jose Mourinho’s time at Man United has finally come to an end, and now it’s a battle for who will inherit his mess.

“At the moment, Zidane and Pochettino are the two names taking the most money, though Antonio Conte has been consistently popular in the market. Good luck to them, I say.”

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