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Oct 20, 2008

Jose sets sights on United

The master marketeer is at it again and this time he's lining himself up a new job before the ink has even dried on his current contract.

Yes, Jose Mourinho is coming back to the Premier League. But don't get too excited, as the self-proclaimed 'Special One' has only signed a three-year contract with Inter Milan in June, which he still intends to fulfil.

Not content with leading Inter to the top of Serie A in his first seven games in charge though, Mourinho's charm knows no bounds and it would appear that his 'love' for the Premier League is at the root of his desire to return once his job in Italy is done.

Speculation can now begin as to where he might end up and the English media can once again look forward to such gems as: ''Young players are a little bit like melons'' and ''It is omelettes and eggs. No eggs - no omelettes''.

Unlikely to return to Chelsea given the way they have started the season under new coach Luiz Felipe Scolari and his acrimonious exit from the club exactly 13 months ago, his relationship with his title rivals has not been the sweetest in the past.

Saving his most barbed comments for Messrs Wenger and Benitez, calling Wenger a 'voyeur' and rubbing the lack of Champions League success in his face; while claiming that "three years without a Premiership title" should be enough to see Benitez sacked, the only other place a manager of Mourinho's quality would consider going is Manchester United.

With such a history of animosity between the Portuguese and the big English clubs, he may get the best reception of the lot at Old Trafford and it is clear that he is well respected by the United fans who may see his arrival as a catalyst for fellow countryman Cristiano Ronaldo to commit his long-term future to the club.

Sir Alex Ferguson is coming to the end of a glittering career that would see him reach the ripe old age of 70 by the time Mourinho would be available and the fact that United will offer Champions League football and an open chequebook is a huge attraction for the 45-year-old. The timing seems just too perfect.

His determination to play dull football might not go down so well at the double winners', although with a matured set of players including Wayne Rooney, Ronaldo, Anderson and Nani in the side, attack might be the only option.

United certainly seems to suit him best. The money, the star players and the history of the club all suggest that he could be a success there. Although with billionaires buying up teams like it's going out of fashion, the possibility of Mourinho taking charge of a Manchester City, Newcastle United or Aston Villa can't be discounted.

Planning for the long-term is no bad thing, although Mourinho may also risk the wrath of some Inter fans with his latest comments. I'd suggest we may not have heard the last over his future and, if Fergie continues, the silver-tongued 'Special One' may end up having to settle for second best.

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