Mourinho gets Sheringham's backing
Ex-United striker says Mourinho must be given time to restore the devil
In his four seasons at Old Trafford, Teddy Sheringham played under one of the greatest managers in the history of football.
Now, he is backing the latest man attempting to fill the shoes of Alex Ferguson.
Jose Mourinho has not enjoyed the best of starts since he took over at the helm at Old Trafford in the summer, with the Red Devils sixth in the English Premier League after 11 games.
The club have spent a king's ransom on star names like Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, yet, are struggling to keep pace, already eight points behind arch-rivals and league leaders Liverpool.
But Mourinho has a supporter in Sheringham, who believes Ferguson's success masked how difficult it actually is to be in charge of a club of United's stature.
"Yeah, I do," the 50-year-old replied, when asked by The New Paper if he felt Mourinho was the right man for the job.
"It just shows you how tough it is to manage Manchester United.
"It has not been easy for the managers that have been in there since, especially when Sir Alex is still around the club breathing down the neck.
"It doesn't make it easy but, if anyone's going to do it, it's Jose."
Under the gifted Scot, United won 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups and the Champions League twice, including the famous treble of 1999, when Sheringham starred in an unforgettable role.
Since Ferguson's retirement, however, David Moyes and Louis van Gaal have occupied the hot seat, and been shown the door, and it is now the turn of Mourinho to revive United.
The Portuguese, a serial winner at Chelsea, recently publicly questioned the commitment of Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw, after both pulled out of last Sunday's match at Swansea City.
Sheringham, who will play in the Battle of Europe 2016 between England and Germany at the National Stadium on Saturday, wants Mourinho to be given time to settle in at the club and get to know his players better.
"Alex Ferguson had his finger on everything that was going on in Manchester, not just the football club, but also the city," the former England international striker pointed out.
"He knew what his players were up to and that's all part of being a manager, understanding the character of the players and it takes a long while to do that.
"Getting to know them doesn't happen overnight and, especially at a massive place like United, you're trying to keep an eye on everything and getting to know stuff and, at the same time, achieve results."
Sheringham was part of a swashbuckling United side that featured a deadly strike combination in Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole, fellow goal ace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, midfielders like Ryan Giggs, David Beckham, Roy Keane and Paul Scholes, and goalkeeping colossus Peter Schmeichel.
United became the first English team to complete the treble of league title, FA Cup and Champions League crown in 1999.
On an unforgettable night at the Nou Camp, United beat Bayern Munich 2-1, with Sheringham netting the equaliser in injury time and Solskjaer striking the winner a minute later in a stunning finish as Ferguson steered the Red Devils to their second European Cup since 1968.
While Ferguson's side always entertained, Mourinho has been criticised over the style of United's game, especially when clubs like Liverpool, Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea have all been producing scintillating football while climbing up the table.
"First things first, you've got to get results to get confidence," said Sheringham.
"Obviously, (City manager) Pep (Guardiola) has come in and his players seem to understand what he's trying to get across, but they also had a blip recently, so it's not going all his way.
"Mourinho has his way of doing things and that's the beauty of football.
"There are different ways to get results, gain confidence and get yourself up the league and they (Mourinho and Guardiola) are both very different."
“If any Englishman is going to be in charge, I’m very happy that Gareth is. The longer he can stay in the job, the better he will get to understand his players.”
- Former England striker Teddy Sheringham, on Gareth Southgate’s prospects of being handed the England manager’s job permanently