Zinedine Zidane has reportedly been in contact with Jose Mourinho to assure the Manchester United manager that there is no plot to replace him going on behind the scenes.
Zidane has been strongly tipped to succeed Mourinho as manager at Old Trafford. Pressure mounted on the Portuguese boss with a dismal display from United this weekend as they suffered a third defeat in seven Premier League matches, losing 3-1 at West Ham.
Senior United sources dismissing as “nonsense” talk they’ve contacted Zidane. Story on @TeleFootball shortly. Mourinho a man in the midst of a crisis that looks like it’s only going to end one way, though. Was anyone really surprised they lost at West Ham? #mufc— James Ducker (@TelegraphDucker) September 29, 2018
The Frenchman is currently out of work, having resigned as Real Madrid manager at the end of last season following a third consecutive Champions League triumph.
The Mirror reports that Zidane phoned Mourinho to ease any fears about being replaced. He revealed that representatives enquired about whether he would be interested if the United job became available, but there was no official approach from the club.
This news is sure to dismay United fans, many of whom have run out of patience with Mourinho and would like to see someone like Zidane or Mauricio Pochettino take over.
It was a miserable week for Mourinho which began with the 1-1 draw against Wolves, followed by the penalty shoot-out defeat to Derby in the Carabao Cup and then the wretched performance at the London Stadium on Saturday.
Mourinho's relationship with Paul Pogba has also sunk to a new low over the last week. The two publicly criticised each other after the Wolves match and Mourinho responded by stripping Pogba of the vice-captaincy. They were also filmed having an icy exchange in training.
Mourinho will hope that there is still time to put things right, starting in the Champions League against Valencia on Tuesday.