The charismatic Frenchman wowed the Old Trafford faithful for years on the pitch, and could be set for a return to the dugout
Pep Guardiola should be Manchester United manager and not Jose Mourinho, according to Eric Cantona.
In a stunning turn of events, the former Red Devils striker also opened the door for a sensational move into management, should the Old Trafford hierarchy wish to appoint him.
Tensions at Old Trafford are running high, with the international break providing a welcome reprieve from on and off-pitch struggles for the club.
Public spats with Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba have only served to intensify the spotlight on Mourinho after a poor start to the season.
Defeats to Brighton and Tottenham have left United four points off Guardiola’s Manchester City side already.
After blitzing the competition with a dazzling style of football last season, Cantona exclusively told the Daily Mail how he wished his former club had appointed Guardiola as Louis van Gaal’s successor in 2016.
He said: “Being in a great film is wonderful; playing for Manchester United is wonderful.
“Well, no — not so good. But it is early in the season… too early to tell. Manchester United is a great club and will always be great. They will win things, I know they will.
“But the way they play? Not good. The manager has them playing the wrong way for the fans. No fun, no creativity. I like Mourinho. He has a good personality but not for United — they should have [Pep] Guardiola as coach.
“He should be there, but he is doing magic with that other club. The club I cannot name.
“I can’t say the name – it is too much pain for me to say the name.”
There have been rumours of Zinedine Zidane replacing Mourinho at the Old Trafford hotseat, with reports suggesting the former Real Madrid boss has already identified four targets he would bring to Manchester.
However, the choice is more complicated according to Cantona who teased a third, potentially spectacular appointment; himself.
‘Listen. I joke about Manchester City but they are playing great football,” he added. “It’s just that I think Guardiola should be at United. He is the spiritual child of Johan Cruyff — he played under Cruyff at Barcelona and learned everything from him. He’s the only person who should be at United.”
‘Well, except for me, I would like to coach. If they called me, I would go; I would enjoy it. They know where I am.
“Then we would play creative football once again.
“It would be great for the fans, like it was with Alex Ferguson — he allowed players to be creative, treated them as individuals. We all felt special with him. All felt loved. He was always praising. A good man. A good leader.”