By Editor Wayne Veysey | Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this
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Manchester United are poised to offer Jose Mourinho a contract that would make him the highest-paid manager in the world, Football Insider sources understand.
The Premier League giants are prepared to trump rivals Manchester City in a bid to entice the Portugese in the summer.
United are willing to pay Mourinho £16million-a-year, equivalent to £308,000-a-week, in a bid to install him as their new manager at the end of the season.
This is more than the £13.3million-a-year Jose Mourinho was on at Chelsea and tops the £14.5million-a-year City will pay Guardiola when he joins from Bayern Munich.
Over the course of the four-year contract that United are ready to put on the table, the deal for Mourinho would be worth a staggering £64million.
The Premier League clubs have held third-party discussions with Mourinho since he was sacked for the second time by Chelsea in mi-December.
United’s wretched performances under Louis van Gaal, as well as a string of mediocre results that have seen them drift out of the title race, has persuaded club chiefs led by executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward to seriously consider Mourinho.
Despite strong reservations among the United old guard of directors, led by Sir Bobby Charlton, about Mourinho’s profile, capacity to court controversy and willingness to implement a style of play in the club’s traditions, there is a growing sense that the team could slip further behind City if they ignore the Portugese’s credentials.
Mourinho’s family have remained at their central London home and the 53-year-old has made it clear that he wants his next managerial job to be in the Premier League.
It was announced by City on Monday that Manuel Pellegrini will step down in the summer and Guardiola will take the reins after ending his three-year Bayern spell.