Sacking Jose mourinho seemed to be the only choice left to Man UTD, with their lowly Premier League position just one factor in the decision.

The Portuguese leaves with the club in sixth place – 19 points adrift of leaders Liverpool and 11 off the Champions League positions.

United’s hierarchy are understood to have been bitterly disappointed by the style of football, as well as the results.

They insist Mourinho was provided with ample financial backing, to the tune of around £400m, and expected more progress on the pitch.

Insiders also insist Mourinho personally chose every player brought in during his time in charge at Old Trafford, despite his repeated complaints about the club’s transfer strategy.