Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo is a candidate to replace Jose Mourinho as Manchester United manager should the 54-year-old decide to walk or be sacked.
SportBild claim that they have sources which indicate that Nuno could take the helm at Old Trafford to become the second consecutive Portuguese boss at Man United.
Nuno is currently in charge of Wolves, who have won one of their opening four Premier League games and drawn twice, including once against champions Manchester City.
Mourinho, meanwhile, has had a rocky start to his third season at United which led many to claim it was the former-Chelsea man’s typical third season syndrome and thus start of a fatal collapse.
United responded to two consecutive defeats against Brighton and Tottenham Hotspur with a comfortable away 2-0 victory against Burnley. That has reduced the pressure on Mourinho going into the international break, but prior to that, former-Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane was rumoured to be a possible replacement for Mourinho.
SportBild claim [via Sport Witness] that it’s not only Zidane who could replace Mourinho but also Nuno, using links between Mourinho and the Wolves manager.
“And so there are already rumours about the succession process. In addition to Zinedine Zidane is also a Portuguese compatriot of Mourinho on the list, according to SportBild info: Nuno Santo, coach of promoted Wolverhampton. Santo was once the goalkeeper of FC Porto, coached by Mourinho. With Jorge Mendes, Mourinho and Santo have the same advisor.”
It seems an incredibly unlikely story. While it’s true that Mourinho and Nuno share Jorge Mendes as an agent, that would appear to make it even more improbable that Nuno would replace Mourinho at Old Trafford, given Mendes would be unhappy dealing with the club if they sacked Mourinho.
Secondly, it would be odd in the extreme, as Sport Witness point out, for a German sports magazine to be a reliable source of information about two Portuguese managers, neither of whom have ever managed or played in Germany, at two English clubs.
For a moment, though, considering Nuno as a replacement for Mourinho shows how much United fans should value Mourinho. Nuno has managed briefly at Porto, Valencia, Rio Ave and now Wolves. His greatest achievement is winning the Championship with Wolves, a side injected with vast sums of money.
Mourinho, in contrast, has won everything there is to win, in a number of countries. He’s not perfect, but he is the big name that should be in charge at United, a proven winner.
Contrastingly, it may be possible that Mourinho could replace Nuno as Wolves boss one day. With a host of Portuguese players represented by Jorge Mendes, an interesting project and big money, taking over an ‘underdog’ team could be perfect for Mourinho in a couple of years time and take him back in time to his FC Porto days, but with more money.