Manchester United sack head coach Jose Mourinho
ASTANA. KAZINFORM - Jose Mourinho has been sacked as manager of English Premier League team Manchester United, the club announced on Tuesday, EFE reports.
United are currently sixth in the league table, 19 points behind leaders Liverpool, who beat them 3-1 on Sunday.
"Manchester United announces that Jose Mourinho has left the club with immediate effect," the club said in a statement.
The Portuguese coach joined the side in 2016 and led them to victory in the Europa League and League Cup in his first season in charge.
The 55-year-old led the 20-time English champions to second place last season, but has overseen a disappointing start to the current campaign, in which they have won just seven of their opening 17 matches while racking up five defeats and five draws.
They were also eliminated from the League Cup by second-tier Derby County, although they did manage to qualify for the Champions League Round of 16, where they will face French champions PSG.
In addition to underwhelming results, the team's style of play, which has seen them score just 29 league goals this season, has been widely criticized by fans and pundits, including former players Paul Scholes and Gary Neville.
In the summer, Mourinho complained of a lack of new signings, especially in defense, despite spending over 60 million pounds the previous season on centre backs Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly.
Two of the club's most expensive signings, Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku, both brought in under Mourinho, have struggled for form, with the former being dropped from the starting line-up in recent games.
The manner of the team's limp defeat at Liverpool, United's fiercest rivals, appears to have been the final straw for the club's board.
"The club would like to thank him for his work during his time at Manchester United and wish him success in the future," the statement said.
A caretaker manager will be appointed until the end of the season "while the club conducts a thorough recruitment process for a new, full-time manager", the statement said.