David Beckham wants Jose Mourinho back in Premier League
Former Manchester United midfielder David Beckham has said that he wants Jose Mourinho back in the Premier League as soon as possible.
Mourinho is the favourite to replace Louis van Gaal as United's next manager following the Portuguese's departure from Chelsea and the growing pressure on the Dutchman.
Beckham said that, when Van Gaal's future is assessed, United need to look at results, style of play and the views of the fans.
The ex-England captain told talkSPORT: "Jose leaving Chelsea, who would have expected that after the season they had last year? But it doesn't make him a bad manager, he's still one of the best managers, and I hope he comes back to the Premier League as soon as possible.
"The Premier League is the Premier League for the great players we bring in, the great teams, the money, the fans and the great characters that we have as managers. You want to see managers like that in the game.
"Who we have at United now is an experienced manager with a great reputation in the game and sometimes it takes time. It's not easy being manager at a club like Manchester United. But, at the end of the day, we have to look at results, we have to look at the way that we play, we have to listen to the fans, the people who really matter at the club."
When asked if he expected United to suffer the slump that they have in recent times, Beckham replied: "As a Manchester United fan, no. I always hoped we wouldn't go through a slump. But it was inevitable. When the manager left, that was a massive thing. But you also lost players like [Roy] Keaney, [Paul] Scholesy, [Ryan] Giggsy. You lose such great characters throughout the team. [Former chief executive] David Gill stepped away from Manchester United. They were all an integral part of the club.
"We've had so much success over the last 20 years. If you don't win something for one season to two seasons, people talk about it being crisis. Man United is Man United. It doesn't matter if you love them or hate them. They are one of the biggest clubs, if not the biggest club, in the world. You have to keep that reputation. The only way is by winning trophies."
United kept up their run in the FA Cup on Monday night with a comfortable 3-0 win in the fifth round against Shrewsbury Town. Beckham believes that reaching the final would help revive spirits at the club, although falling short of what United have become accustomed to, over the past 25 years.
The 40-year-old said: "It's been a disappointing season so far because of the performances and the way we have played in certain games. Any silverware at the end of the year, or any good run in any competition, is successful.
"It might not be enough for Manchester United. Even when we used to win just the FA Cup, or just the Premiership, that was never enough for us as a club and as players. Unless you win everything at Manchester United, as a Man United fan or a player, you never think it is going to be enough.
"But I think, at the end of a year where there has been a lot of criticism and performances haven't been as good, to come away and be in an FA Cup final... There's nothing as a player that you enjoy more than going down to London, getting ready in your FA Cup suit, and playing in these games."
Beckham also said that Wayne Rooney should start for England this summer, citing the player's experience, respect from teammates, and his track record of scoring in big games.
The United midfielder also spoke about Gary Neville, his former right-back colleague, saying that it was a "brave" decision for him to manage Valencia due to the language barrier and size of the club.
Arindam is ESPN FC's Manchester United correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @ARejSport.