Jose Mourinho: Man Utd chiefs think boss wants out with Ed Woodward row an exit ploy
Mourinho is worrying Manchester United players with his erratic behaviour and club chiefs now reportedly feel the same.
The 55-year-old is currently in the midst of a transfer battle with Woodward who, despite being charged with the task of bringing in a centre-back and right-winger, has only managed to sign Fred, Diogo Dalot and Lee Grant so far.
And BBC Sport say some Manchester United figures believe Mourinho’s ongoing war with Woodward is part of his exit strategy.
The Red Devils manager barely stays around too long at any club.
He spent just over three seasons at Chelsea between 2004 and 2007.
Then, a two-year stint at Inter Milan followed. After that, he spent three turbulent years at Real Madrid before leaving after angering the likes of Sergio Ramos, Iker Casillas and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Before the United job, was his Chelsea homecoming. Again, he lasted just over three seasons.
And BBC Sport suggest that members of the Red Devils hierarchy think Mourinho is keen to leave.
He only penned a contract extension back in February but, since then, the club have endured a trophyless season, lost an FA Cup final and failed to coax the best from big-money signings Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez.
His war with Woodward is particularly concerning.
The two men have, by and large, got on. Woodward was so determined to appoint Mourinho in 2016 he started negotiations with the 55-year-old long before Louis van Gaal had left his post.
Some United figures, though, support Mourinho still. They feel his appetite for conflict is part of what has made him one of the most successful managers of his era.
Pundit Chris Sutton, though, thinks differently. He feels Mourinho is a man ready to leave United behind him.
“Not only has Jose Mourinho risked alienating his players and the fans in pre-season but he is damaging Manchester United’s brand, too. Carry on like this and he won’t be at the club come Christmas,” he said.
“Mourinho, the figurehead of the world’s biggest football club, has told the 101,000 supporters who watched United’s 4-1 defeat by Liverpool in Michigan that they should have stayed away.
“He is starting to sound like a manager who wants out. To start dishing out ultimatums on transfer spending smacks of desperation.
“Once you start taking on the board, there is usually only one winner.
“Should Mourinho continue in this vein and his side suffer a slow start to the season, United will rapidly run out of patience.”