The Portuguese won the Europa League and the League Cup during his first season at Old Trafford, but with the club sitting in sixth place in the Premier League, nineteen points behind leaders Liverpool, and after the club’s worst start in twenty-eight years it was time to call it a day.
According to the Manchester Evening News, there were only four players who supported the Portuguese coach, and who were against the decision to dismiss Mourinho, taken after a meeting alone with United’s Chief Executive Ed Woodward on Tuesday morning.
They were Ashley Young, Nemanja Matic, Marouane Fellaini and Romelu Lukaku.
The club also took into account Mourinho’s transfer spend of around £400m on eleven players who the club insist were all the Portuguese’s choice.
In addition to the disquiet regarding the team’s lacklustre displays, there was further disappointment at Mourinho’s development and improvement of United’s younger players.
The ‘Special One ’mid-season sacking will prove costly for the club.
United will now have to pay him a Champions League “top up” having sacked him while the club are still in the European competition.
Though Mourinho was on a basic salary of €20m – which is what Manchester United are liable to pay in order to dismiss him – the contract included a twenty-five per cent bonus if the club were still in the running for either of the two main competitions upon being sacked which could bring the total to €25m, to cut short a contract that was poised to run until 2020.
Where now for the Setúbal born coach who started as an interpreter for Sir Bobby Robson at Sporting and FC Porto, before gaining success as his assistant at Barcelona?
Real Madrid, Inter Milan and the Chinese Super League have been suggested but after his failures at Chelsea and United he may find it hard to break into the big time anytime soon.