Manchester United Transfer News: Jose Mourinho Set £300M Budget Amid Rumours

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistFebruary 11, 2016

Former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho smiles as he attends a group photo session pitchside as a guest of FIFA Presidential Candidate Gianni Infantino after unveiling his 90 day plan that he will implement if he is elected FIFA President, at Wembley Stadium in London, Monday, Feb. 1, 2016.  (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
Matt Dunham/Associated Press

Jose Mourinho is reportedly set to be given a £300 million transfer kitty to rebuild the Manchester United squad if he takes over as manager at Old Trafford.

The former Chelsea boss looks increasingly likely to succeed the struggling Louis van Gaal as United manager, with the latest reports indicating he will receive £15.5 million a year should he take over from the Dutchman in the summer, per Richard Tanner in the Daily Express.

To go with his enormous salary, Mourinho will also be handed a "war chest" of up to £300 million to build a squad capable of challenging again for top domestic and European honours, according to Jeremy Cross in the Daily Star.

Per Cross, a United source said: "If Jose comes in he will be given whatever it takes to make United the best again. But it isn't just about how much is spent, what matters is how it is spent because United need the right players to take them forward. Only genuine world-class stars will be looked at."

Van Gaal has spent more than £250 million since joining United in 2014, and to little effect.

Though he secured a top-four Premier League finish last season, the Red Devils were knocked out of the 2015-16 Champions League at the group stage and are struggling to qualify for next term's competition—fourth-placed Manchester City are six points ahead of them in the table.

Mourinho, though, has a higher stature in the game due to his huge success in the last 15 years with FC Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid, and Bleacher Report's Dean Jones believes he could attract better players to United: 

Cross mentioned the likes of Neymar, Edinson Cavani, Thomas Muller, Paul Pogba and Raphael Varane as possible targets for United under Mourinho.

However, his report also indicated Real Madrid stars Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Sergio Ramos will still be out of reach even if the Portuguese comes in, as Los Blancos "are refusing to do business with United."

The 53-year-old manager will shake things up if he is installed as Old Trafford boss, and that will not be limited to only bringing players into the club, per football writer Sam Pilger:

Mourinho has historically liked to deal with a small squad and will move out some of the numerous additions that David Moyes and Van Gaal have made since Sir Alex Ferguson called it a day at Old Trafford in 2013. 

He will also have his own transfer targets in mind that have not, as yet, been on United's radar.

One current star the Red Devils are reportedly eyeing is Inter Milan captain Mauro Icardi.

According to Italian outlet Tuttosport (via Metro's Jamie Sanderson), Inter will accept offers of around £34.9 million for the striker in the summer if they fail to reach the Champions League next season.

The report indicates that United went in for Icardi in January and are prepared to return for him come the summer.

He would, in theory, be a decent addition to United's squad, as they are short on strikers and the 22-year-old Italian is a proven finisher, per Opta:

Over the last two seasons, Icardi has netted 32 times in 57 Serie A appearances, and he would provide United with another goalscoring outlet alongside Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial, per

However, while he may be on United's radar now, that could all change in the summer if Mourinho takes the top job at Old Trafford.