Ding dong Mourinho's gone! This is not a drill!
Like him or loathe him (probably the latter), getting the sack one week before Christmas is not what you'd wish on anyone really. Although, a payout of up to £24m does restore some of the festive cheer...
Anyway, it's goodbye to the Special One, who could not stop the third season rot yet again. His departure had been on the way for some time, with United very much not united. Just about every single first team player has been linked with an Old Trafford exit in recent weeks, there have been near-constant public digs, rifts and snipes and, to top it off, Xherdan Shaqiri scored brace for God's sake!
As United fans adjust their tortured brains to a world post Mourinho, here is how Twitter reacted to the shock news of Jose's sacking on Tuesday morning...
Jose sacked!— 90min (@90min_Football) December 18, 2018
United fans right now...pic.twitter.com/etPBbI6mF2
Party at Pogba’s tonight. Pass it on pic.twitter.com/VtrMZExCvy— Jack Lang (@jacklang) December 18, 2018
*Paul Pogba logs into Twitter* pic.twitter.com/ym9LqQQNFq— Ben McAleer (@BenMcAleer1) December 18, 2018
The staff in that hotel must be f*cking delighted they're finally seeing the back of Mourinho.— Paddy Power (@paddypower) December 18, 2018
While the announcement was a surprise, his departure was always the inevitable outcome...
Jose Mourinho leaves Manchester United with a worse defensive record than Huddersfield, the same goal difference as Leicester and the same number of wins as Bournemouth.— Richard Jolly (@RichJolly) December 18, 2018
26 - Manchester United have picked up 26 points after their first 17 league games this season under Jose Mourinho; their worst points haul in the top-flight at this stage since 1990-91 (also 26 points). Dip. pic.twitter.com/I9iHo1uqVQ— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 18, 2018
Not everyone is happy, however...
Bastards.— David Squires (@squires_david) December 18, 2018
As the internet collectively began to process the news, musings turned to who will take over in the long term, amid reports that Michael Carrick is to take charge of training until an interim appointment is made...
Replacing Jose Mourinho with Michael Carrick is like replacing your Ferrari that has a warning light on with a fully serviced Punto— Ross (@yesthisisross) December 18, 2018
Buzzing for Carrick to lead United to a 12th place finish. #MUFC— Rory Jennings (@Chelsearory) December 18, 2018
There are other candidates though...
What United need now is strong and stable leadership as they negotiate their exit from the top six. pic.twitter.com/JVfVcVUSfd— kelly_welles (@kelly_welles) December 18, 2018
Spurs fans right now...
I guess Conte may be in the frame, Zidane, Pochettino, Jardim maybe Simeone.— James Dickens (@JamesWDickens) December 18, 2018
To me, United appointing a caretaker manager until the end of the season suggests they’re after someone that’s currently unobtainable but that might be gettable at the end of the year.— Si Lloyd (@SmnLlyd5) December 18, 2018
Announcing that it's a caretaker until the end of the season worries me more. Enjoy Poch while we can imo.— tehTrunk (@tehTrunk) December 18, 2018
And, what's next for Jose as he hands his room key back in at the Lowry?
Best thing would be Mourinho at Malaga, of course— Sid Lowe (@sidlowe) December 18, 2018
Jose Mourinho has been spotted driving to Dundee in bare feet, eating Toblerones. pic.twitter.com/MoOAUY0hfS— Paddy Power (@paddypower) December 18, 2018
Mourinho setting himself up nicely for the Qatar 2022 job....— James Montague (@JamesPiotr) December 18, 2018
There are mixed feelings as to the Special One's legacy at Old Trafford...
Mourinho sacked. He was the overwhelming fan choice in ‘16. Had a good first season, an acceptable second one until it faded badly. This season has been atrocious and 80% of fans wanted him gone in the last month - not that he’s the only one to blame. Thanks and good luck.— Andy Mitten (@AndyMitten) December 18, 2018
Manchester United indulged the out of control ego of Jose Mourinho for too long. He was destroying the club from within.— Oliver Holt (@OllieHolt22) December 18, 2018
Thanks for the memories, Jose. pic.twitter.com/2wtCizXnYK— The Man Utd Way (@TheManUtdWay) December 18, 2018
Let's be honest, we owe Jose Mourinho a thank you for completing the club. He went on to win the Europa League, the last trophy we did not have in our club.— Aidan Walsh (@AidanWalshMUFC) December 18, 2018
Thanks Jose and best of luck in the future. pic.twitter.com/F9QZBPs2Wc
A couple of final sobering thoughts...
And to think the original contract Manchester United gave to David Moyes hasn't expired yet.— Phil McNulty (@philmcnulty) December 18, 2018