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Guillem Balague says Man United will snub Jose Mourinho this summer

Despite Louis van Gaal’s current contract lasting until 2017, he has been continually linked with a premature exit from Old Trafford.

Mourinho has been continually linked with the Man United job of late.
Mourinho has been continually linked with the Man United job of late.
Image: Nick Potts

RESPECTED FOOTBALL JOURNALIST Guillem Balague claims Man United will snub Jose Mourinho this summer, preferring instead to stick with current boss Louis van Gaal.

Despite Van Gaal’s current contract lasting until 2017, he has been continually linked with a premature exit from Old Trafford, with many of the club’s fans calling for the veteran coach to be sacked.

Yet while it has been a troubled season at Old Trafford, Van Gaal and his side could still end the campaign on a high with both an FA Cup and a top-four spot still very much up for grabs, with last night’s win over Crystal Palace taking the Red Devils to within a point of the Champions League places.

Mourinho has been strongly tipped to replace the Dutchman, but Balague reports that the change won’t happen this summer.

In his latest article for Yahoo Sports, Balague writes that “Jose Mourinho’s long-held dream of managing Manchester United is vanishing very fast” and adding that Alex Ferguson and Bobby Charlton aren’t the only influential figures at the club who have doubts about Mourinho.

“And this despite extraordinary pressure from the Mourinho camp who, throughout the season, have mounted a ferocious media campaign to undermine van Gaal and promote the Mourinho cause, recently even stating off the record that the Mourinho/Man United marriage was a ‘done deal,’” Balague writes.

I never believed it and that was why I always reported what they said (not once I said myself that it was a done deal, I only reported what I was being told by Mou’s camp, but of course people read what they wanted from it) and I always had to include the fact that Van Gaal has thought for a while that he was going to be in charge one more season and why I mentioned too the club kept insisting no deal for Mourinho had been agreed, no matter how many stories were published about it.”

Balague also says that Van Gaal is targeting Romelu Lukaku of Everton — who Man United face in the FA Cup semi-final on Saturday — as their big signing this summer.

It is, of course, not the first time a journalist has made an unequivocal claim about the Man United job, though the well-sourced Balague has a better track record than most — he was the first to break news about the collapse of David de Gea’s transfer to Real Madrid last August and is widely regarded as one of football’s most respected commentators.

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Paul Fennessy

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