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Jose Mourinho 'Can Imagine' Working in Ligue 1 After Manchester United Exit

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIFebruary 17, 2019

LILLE, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 17: Former Manchester United head coach Jose Mourinho during the Ligue 1 match between Lille and Montpellier at Stade Pierre Mauroy on February 17, 2019 in Lille, France. (Photo by Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images)
Sylvain Lefevre/Getty Images

Jose Mourinho says he can imagine working as a manager in Ligue 1 following his departure from Manchester United in December 2018.

The 56-year-old was sacked by the Red Devils in the midst of a disappointing campaign but says he would be interested in working in a new country, per beIN Sports (h/t FourFourTwo). 

"I can imagine myself as a coach in Ligue 1. I am a man who has worked in four different countries, I like to know and learn other cultures. Working in a new championship would be a fantastic experience.

"For now I'm calm, I try to live better with my family and friends and I work to get the right opportunity to go back to training.

"Two to three months [without a job] is okay, afterwards it's more difficult. I hope to have the opportunity to come back stronger.

"My project is my project as a person and coach, to improve myself, to be better, to think all days about my profession, which is also a passion. But this is not the time to talk with clubs."

Mourinho was in attendance for Lille's 0-0 draw against Montpellier on Sunday in Ligue 1:

LOSC Lille EN @LOSC_EN

👀 Spotted ! A 'special' visitor is enjoying today's action at the @StadePM. #LOSCMHSC https://t.co/Vu12VWD20D

The Portuguese has been out of work since leaving Old Trafford. The club have since revealed that Mourinho and his staff received £19.6 million in compensation after being fired by the Red Devils, per Simon Stone at BBC Sport.

Sporting Intelligence's Nick Harris offered some context:

Nick Harris @sportingintel

Man Utd's £19.6m pay-off to Mourinho & staff, announced today, would pay the wages of all the players, managerial team, coaches, and all other staff, footballing and otherwise, at an average League Two club. For eight years.

Mourinho won the UEFA Europa League and the League Cup during his time at Manchester United, but the team have thrived in his absence under caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Joe Prince-Wright @JPW_NBCSports

Breaking: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has now won more Premier League games this season (8) than Jose Mourinho (7). It has taken Solskjaer 9 games to achieve that feat... #MUFC #PLonNBC https://t.co/TReUTbqHww

The team were in sixth place in the Premier League when Mourinho departed but have moved back into the top four under Solskjaer.

The Norwegian has employed an attacking approach that has excited supporters who had become disillusioned under Mourinho.

The contrast in the team's fortunes reflects poorly on Mourinho and has prompted suggestions he is out of date:

Daniel Storey @danielstorey85

The right decision for Manchester United, and one that I didn't think those above Jose Mourinho would have the bottle to make. Mourinho may well get another big job, but his tactics, man management and ethos were outdated at Manchester United.

There's no doubt that Mourinho's managerial reputation has been damaged by his time at Manchester United. Yet his record and ability to win trophies throughout his career suggests clubs will still be willing to take a chance on him in the future.

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