Football news - Paper Round: Jose Mourinho to be sacked by Manchester United this weekend
Jose Mourinho to be sacked, Cesc Fabregas and Gary Cahill close to Chelsea exit, and Newcastle United remain up for sale.
Mourinho sacked this weekend
Manchester United will sack Jose Mourinho this weekend, regardless of what happens in Saturday's match against Newcastle United. Senior United sources have told the Mirror that he can no longer save his job, having soured reationships with players, fans and staff with his aggressive attitude. Ed Woodward no longer has any patience left, and will appoint Michael Carrick as caretaker until he can find a permanent replacement, with Zinedine Zidane the favourite.
Paper Round's view: Mourinho has been set up for a fall by Woodward in the summer, so he has decided to provoke a sacking - that's at least how it seems. Carrick has no experience, and tactically made no improvement to his own game for over a decade, so quite why he deserves to be manager is anyone's guess. Zidane is also no fool, and has been linked with a job at Juventus, so this seems like United are moving from one disaster to a another.
Fabregas waits on Chelsea contract offer
Cesc Fabregas could leave Chelsea at the end of the season on a free transfer, but does not want to go. The 31-year-old wants a new contract, but is aware that an offer has not been forthcoming, and that the club have a policy of offering one-year extensions to players over 30. Fabregas lost his starting place to Jorginho after missing the season opener with a knee injury.
Cesc FabregasGetty Images
Paper Round's view: Fabregas has gone in and out of form Chelsea as he has struggled with injuries. Now, however, he seems to have adapted to the changes in his body and can perform an effective role in central midfield, just with less physical exertion. Any other club might be interested in such a player on a free transfer, and he has been linked with AC Milan in the past.
Cahill reluctant to leave
Another player who is happy to stay at Chelsea is Gary Cahill. Like Fabregas, he is struggling for game time, but played in the Europa League along with Fabregas on Thursday. He believes that the club can repeat their Europa League success of 2013, and wants to be part of the challenge, despite sitting on the bench for the next game against Southampton. The 32-year-old had questioned his future after falling down the pecking order under Maurizio Sarri.
Gary Cahill is growing frustrated at the lack of playing time at ChelseaGetty Images
Paper Round's view: Cahill is consistent and experienced, and knows Chelsea well. Letting him go as Sarri adjusts to life in London might be a mistake, but younger players are likely to replace him in the medium term. He is likely to receive an offer to stay in the Premier League, but given he has played a few more games of late, that decision will probably be postponed until the summer
Newcastle still up for sale
Newcastle managing director Lee Charnley was quizzed by fans over the future of Rafael Benitez and the club at a fan forum, and the club have released a statement on the subject. The board said: "The club is focused on Rafa Benítez and would like him to stay... The club remains for sale."
Rafa Benitez - Newcastle UnitedGetty Images
Paper Round's view: Newcastle desperately need new owners who will show more thought over the future of the club. Right now, Benitez's patience is being tested and surely a better offer for him will be along soon. The fans and owner Mike Ashley are getting nothing out of the current relationship, and it is baffling that a sale is yet to be agreed for a valuable asset.