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City future bright with youth

Manchester City
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Schmeichel: Utd don't need Mourinho

Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel has slammed rumours hinting Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho is the natural successor to United's Alex Ferguson.

• Blog: Real Madrid await
• Blog: Jones sets tone

Mourinho and Ferguson will go toe-to-toe when United visit Madrid on Wednesday for the first-leg of the clubs' knock-out Champions League tie, with many predicting the battle to be a pre-cursor to Mourinho's claims on the Old Trafford throne.

But former goalkeeper Schmeichel is unimpressed with the 50-year-old's candidacy, firm in his stance that facets of the Portuguese manager would do the club more harm than good.

"He will not be the successor. I don't think the club would be happy with everything Mourinho brings with him," Schmeichel told El Mundo. "He's a great candidate for his qualities as a manager but the club doesn't want all the things that come with him.

"Chelsea, Inter and now Real Madrid - he doesn't last more than three years."

Madrid start as popular favourites heading into the match at the Bernabeu, with home advantage and an attacking arsenal headlined by Cristiano Ronaldo enough to sway the balance in Real's favour in many people's opinion.

But after opening a 12-point gap at the head of the Premier League with victory over Everton last Sunday, a bemused Schmeichel was confident United could claim a vital first leg win.

"Almost everyone in the world considers Madrid to be favourites - that's strange. We should beat them because we're having a good season," Schmeichel said.

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