Manchester United appoint Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho has succeeded Louis van Gaal as Manchester United manager, the club have confirmed.

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Manchester United believe they have got the "best manager in the game today" after confirming the appointment of Jose Mourinho.

Mourinho has agreed a three-year contract with an option to stay at the club until at least 2020 after days of negotiations with previous club Chelsea regarding his image rights were resolved.

The Portuguese, who claimed United possess a "mystique and romance no other club can match", replaces Louis van Gaal, who was sacked on Monday, two days after leading the club to FA Cup success against Crystal Palace.

A club statement read: "José Mourinho will take over as manager of Manchester United from the 2016/17 season, signing a three-year contract with an option to stay at the club until at least 2020.

"José, 53, has managed at the top level of European football for over a decade and in that time has won league titles and cups in four countries (Portugal, England, Italy and Spain), as well as winning the UEFA Champions League twice – in 2004 with FC Porto and in 2010 with Inter Milan."

United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said: "José is quite simply the best manager in the game today. He has won trophies and inspired players in countries across Europe and, of course, he knows the Premier League very well, having won three titles here.

"I’d like to take this opportunity to welcome him to Manchester United. His track record of success is ideal to take the club forward."

Mourinho said: "To become Manchester United manager is a special honour in the game. It is a club known and admired throughout the world. There is a mystique and a romance about it which no other club can match.

"I have always felt an affinity with Old Trafford; it has hosted some important memories for me in my career and I have always enjoyed a rapport with the United fans. I’m looking forward to being their manager and enjoying their magnificent support in the coming years."

United have been linked with Mourinho for a number of months due to inconsistent results and much-maligned performances under the guidance of Van Gaal.

The former Real Madrid head coach has been out of work since leaving Chelsea in December following a dismal defence of the Premier League title they won last year.

Van Gaal was dismissed despite the Wembley success on Saturday.

The ex-Netherlands boss said in a statement he was proud to have managed the club but was "very disappointed" not to have seen out the three-year contract he signed in 2014.

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