United set to appoint Mourinho, as Van Gaal is relieved of duty
Manchester United have sacked head coach Louis van Gaal, paving the way for Jose Mourinho to take charge of the club this summer.
The Red Devils finished the season on a high with an FA Cup final win over Crystal Palace on Saturday – Van Gaal’s first piece of silverware with the club – but the majority of supporters felt that the triumph simply papered over the cracks.
Van Gaal took over at Manchester United in the summer of 2014, after a successful World Cup with the Netherlands where he led the Oranje to third place.
However, Van Gaal has been unable to replicate those sort of performances at Old Trafford and has been under intense scrutiny over the last two years.
The club finished in fourth in Van Gaal’s first season of charge, but a humiliating Champions League group stage exit this campaign and eventual fifth-place finish in the Premier League heaped more pressure on the 64-year-old.
A questionable style of play, a lack of goals and an inability to please the home fans had left Van Gaal on the ropes for a number of months, with the majority of fans eagerly keen for him to move on.
While many felt Van Gaal would get the sack in the winter, the club opted to keep the former Ajax and Barcelona boss on to complete the second of his three-year contract.
However, it seems the Red Devils were unable to resist the temptation of bringing in free agent Jose Mourinho, who seems almost certain to replace Van Gaal at the helm in the coming days.
The Daily Mail report that the club’s executive vice-chairman met with Van Gaal and all of his coaching staff on Monday morning, before notifying them they had all been relieved of their duties.
Van Gaal’s Dutch coaching staff – including United assistant coach Albert Stuivenberg and goalkeeper coach Frans Hoek – have also left the club with immediate effect, as per the aforementioned source.
It is believed that Hoek also had a fractious relationship with goalkeeper David De Gea.
Portuguese tactician, Mourinho – who worked with Van Gaal during their days at Barcelona – has been out of a job since being sacked in December by Chelsea and is now heavily expected to replace the Dutchman at Old Trafford.
• Culled from squawka.com
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