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Marcotti: FIFA cleaning up its act?

FIFA
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Will Jose Mourinho return Manchester United to their former glory?

The ESPN FC crew debate whether or not Jose Mourinho would make Manchester United a title contender overnight.

Now this looks like a job for me
So everybody just follow me
'Cause we need a little controversy
'Cause it feels so empty without me.

-- Eminem (Without Me)

Guess who's back.

Back again.

Jose Mourinho's return to the Premier League as manager of Manchester United, some six months after being shown the door by Chelsea, was in the cards for months. Indeed, some day, we'll probably find out why it took so long to make the change when the "Special One" was pretty much openly peddling himself to Old...


Man United handle Louis van Gaal situation badly, Barca's gritty cup win

ESPN FC's Steve Nicol and Shaka Hislop call Manchester United "classless" after rumours of Jose Mourinho's hiring leaked out shortly after the FA Cup final.

The Louis van Gaal era at Old Trafford is now over -- Manchester United confirmed his departure on Monday evening -- and it will leave a bitter taste, and not just because of the poor results and poorer performance on the pitch.

There's a classy, clever way to handle succession and there's a ham-fisted way. Two years ago, when David Moyes was dispatched, Manchester United were pilloried because the former Everton boss found out via the media. It left him humiliated, and regardless of what you...

Milan's status quo set to continue as problems persist on and off the pitch

ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti examines whether AC Milan will be sold before Sept. 1.

You have to go back to the mid-1980s, before the Silvio Berlusconi era, to find such a prolonged silverware drought at the current one at Milan. Even if they win the Coppa Italia against Juventus on Saturday, it will be their first trophy since 2010-11, when Max Allegri led them to the scudetto.

(If you're pedant, you'll point out that they also won the Italian Super Cup in 2011-12. It hardly changes the point. This is still the longest period without a trophy since Berlusconi's arrival in 1986.)

Milan...

Arsenal finishing above Spurs doesn't mean much, Barca's title in context

The ESPN FC panel look at Wenger's assertion that Arsenal should be proud of the way that they handled their EPL season.

So there you have it: We're celebrating Saint Totteringham's Day, the Arsenal feast traditionally toasting the day Tottenham can no longer overtake the Gunners in the table. It normally falls in March or April; this time, we had to wait until the final day of the season. Even Lukas Podolski was in on the act.

Arsenal thumped Aston Villa 4-0 and Spurs somehow contrived to faceplant at St. James' Park, losing 5-1 against Newcastle and thereby slipping to third place behind Arsene Wenger's crew....

Man United don't appear to have a plan post-Van Gaal, and that's a big concern

ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti rates the likelihood that Louis van Gaal is the manager at Manchester United next season.

I have a good friend who is a huge Manchester United fan and has an inveterate capacity to always see the positives. I pointed out to him that even if United beat Bournemouth on the final day of the season, they will fail to go above the 70-point mark for the third consecutive year or, maybe not coincidentally, since you-know-who retired and Ed Woodward replaced David Gill.

The last time the club went through such an extended stretch of futility was between 1988 and 1991. "Yeah, but look what...

Man City issues go beyond Pellegrini; Barcelona close; Guardiola assessed

The ESPN FC crew look at the heavyweight tilt between Arsenal and Manchester City, saying it lacked flair and importance.

Manchester City's 2-2 home draw with Arsenal means they no longer control their destiny in terms of qualifying for the Champions League. If Manchester United win their last two games -- away to West Ham and home to Bournemouth -- then City and Pep Guardiola will be playing in the Europa League next season.

After the twin disappointments of last week -- the horrid performance against Southampton and the flaccid display at Real Madrid -- Manuel Pellegrini's task Sunday was to restore confidence and...