Sir Alex Ferguson has paid one of the biggest compliments in football to Jose Mourinho by saying that he believes the Real Madrid boss has the capabilities to be the next Manchester United manager.
Ferguson didn’t explicitly state that he wanted Mourinho to take charge of the Red Devils when he eventually retires, but he does think the former Chelsea boss would be more than capable of managing the Manchester giants.
“He can manage anywhere, absolutely. I’m not going to put any forecasts on what is going to happen at this club. I won’t last forever, but Jose can manage anywhere, there is no question about that.”
Mourinho has had an incredible amount of success in his short managerial career, winning no less than 21 trophies in just 10 years, and this is something that even Ferguson is impressed by.
“I would never think a guy who hasn’t played a game could be a top coach, but then you’ve got to look at his personality, I think his personality does it,” Ferguson added.
“He’s got a marvellous, strong personality and I think that bridges that gap.
“That’s incredible (the number of trophies Mourinho has won). How old is he now? Fiftieth year. So he is 20 years behind me. At the same rate he is going to add another 42 trophies. At the current rate, amazing isn’t it?”
Mourinho introduced himself to the Premier League in spectacular style when he divided opinion in the UK after naming himself the ‘Special One’ when he became manager of Chelsea, and the long-running United boss was initially unsure about the former Porto coach.
“I remember his first press conference and I thought ‘he’s cocky, him’,” said the Scot.
“He was telling the players, ‘Look, I’m the Special One, we don’t lose games’. Coming to England, he is only a young man and saying he is the Special One!
“But what it did, it told all the players to have the belief they were going to win the league.”
Mourinho has previously stated his love of the Premier League and never ruled out a return to England following his departure from Chelsea in 2007, and the former Blues boss even spoke of his desire to win the Champions League with a club from England.
“In my whole career everything was perfect, the only thing I didn’t do, and I hope I can do it one day, is to win a Champions League with an English club,” said Mourinho.
But according to another former manager of Porto and Chelsea, Andre Villas-Boas, the current Real boss would also love the opportunity to manage his national side if the opportunity arises.
“Here was a person coming out of a completely different education. He changed the way people trained. Changed the way people spoke about the game,” said the current Tottenham Hotspur coach.
“I have to say at this moment, if I am sitting here it is because Jose changed the legacy of Portuguese football.
“I think he will be extremely driven to win the World Cup for his country. And when that happens, when statistically he’s the best manager that has ever been then I think he will finally leave the game.”