It’s Manchester United’s worst league start in 29 years, the dressing room atmosphere is toxic and the fans are so bored that they’ve started bringing sudoku puzzle books to games, but Jose Mourinho is still somehow in the United hot seat.
Even Mourinho himself seems surprised and disappointed that he hasn’t been relieved of his duties yet.
After all it is his third season so he should be headed for an expensive resort in the Maldives pretty soon.
Fear not Jose, Paddy Power is here to outline the five-step plan to getting your P45.
Play Pogba in goal
Mourinho’s feud with the World Cup winning star man has been one of the main talking points of the season so far.
At times like these it’s crucial for a manager to assert his authority and show the rest of the squad that no one man is bigger than the team.
What better way to do that than to put Pogba between the posts? An aggrieved David de Gea looks on as Pogba stands sulkily on the goal line doing kick-ups with his water bottle before diving out the way of an incoming shot in case it ruins his hair.
In fact, Mourinho should employ his £89m man in a variety of positions, from ball-boy to programme seller until the board start to see he may not be getting the best value out of him.
Re-sign the deadly duo
If Ed Woodward somehow still hasn’t pulled the plug by January, the transfer window is a great chance to make a statement.
Mourinho is within his rights to demand access to a massive war chest to rejuvenate United’s flagging campaign.
After weeks of speculation and hype, the Portuguese tactician calls a press conference to unveil his superstar signings – David Bellion and Eric Djemba-Djemba at £100m apiece.
Mourinho then insists on playing the two of them as a striking partnership, refusing to take them off as an increasingly desperate Marcus Rashford warms up on the sideline.
BREAKING: Reports coming in of a planned 'cabbage stand' outside Old Trafford this weekend. More as we get it… pic.twitter.com/Ea7dppcvXN
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) October 3, 2018
Get the fans to throw food
It worked for Steve Bruce at Aston Villa after all. Weeks of clinging on to his job despite fan protests were ended overnight as soon as someone pitched a cabbage at him.
There was no coming back from that.
Obviously in the Premier League you need a higher standard of food to be thrown to get the message across, but when fans start pitching tagliatelle with artichoke and truffles and roast pheasant at the bench, surely the extent of their anger will be clear to the board.
Lose the dressing room (literally)
Jose may have metaphorically lost the dressing room some time ago, but he’s only just started trying to do it literally.
United turned up to the Valencia game late (although it’s doubtful whether anyone would’ve noticed the difference if they hadn’t shown up at all in that first half), but that didn’t quite do the trick.
The next step is organising a ‘team bonding day’ in the Australian outback, driving 20 hours into the middle of nowhere, getting everyone out the bus to stretch their legs and driving off, leaving the team stranded in one of the world’s most inhospitable climates just two days before kick-off against Chelsea.
He could also try literally parking the bus on the edge of the United box, which would at least upset the groundsman and the DVLA if nothing else.
Go big with the programme notes
The public mouthpiece of the manager, programme notes are a great chance to publicly humiliate his bosses.
Instead of the usual assurances of ‘giving 100%’ and ‘going out there to win’, Mourinho should use his programme notes to tell a series of bawdy stag-do anecdotes and some witty gags about Woodward’s receding hairline.
The match-day programme would also be a great place for Mourinho to try out some of his experimental poetry or keep a diary of his bowel movements.
Finally, if all else fails, try writing ‘I hate Ed Woodward’ with the first letter of each sentence.
Dare to bare
If he’s still in a job come January, there’s nothing left for it but to turn up to a cold St James’ Park completely naked with an insulting tattoo of Woodward on his bare arse.