Manchester United have confirmed the departure of manager Jose Mourinho after the club’s stuttering run of form led to their worst-ever start to a Premier League season.
The 55-year-old Portuguese’s last match in charge was the 3-1 defeat by league leaders Liverpool on Sunday which left them 19 points behind their opponents.
It is understood Michael Carrick will look after affairs before the club appoint an external candidate in the next 24 to 48 hours to take charge on a caretaker basis for the rest of the season.
A statement from the club said: “Manchester United announces that manager Jose Mourinho has left the club with immediate effect. The club would like to thank Jose for his work during his time at Manchester United and to wish him success in the future.
“A new caretaker manager will be appointed until the end of the current season, while the club conducts a thorough recruitment process for a new, full-time manager,” the statement read.
Mourinho’s relationship with key members of his playing squad appeared to have disintegrated this season, with a public training-ground face-off with Paul Pogba and club captain Antonio Valencia being forced to apologise for ‘liking’ an Instagram post calling for Mourinho to be sacked.
The former Porto, Chelsea, Inter and Real Madrid manager had hoped to stay at United for 15 years, but he has lasted little more than two.
Mourinho leaves United in sixth place in the table and 19 points adrift of league leaders Liverpool.
United’s next league fixture is away to Cardiff on Saturday evening.