Despite enduring a testing spell with United, which started positively enough as three trophies were secured in his debut campaign, Mourinho is still widely considered one of the best in the business.
The Portuguese specialist now has right to head another club.
And it sounds like it could get even better for United should Real re-hire Mourinho, because doing so would trigger a clause in the 55-year-old's previous contract. His team won the Football League Super Cup, EFL Cup and Europa League.
Jose Mourinho has only been out of a job for a few weeks, but he is already set to return to our television screens. Speculation is rife over the Real job at the moment, with Santiago Solari struggling for positive results in the wake of Julen Lopetegui's departure in October. It's not a gamble in the dark, the clubs are trying to hire a player or a coach they know, they've already been there, and if they invite you it's because they know the value of the person.
No one was surprised by his sacking, and Mourinho himself had spent the final months of his job looking like a man who had checked out ages ago and was simply waiting for his employers to run out of patience.
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"Today I have no intention of returning to Portugal. The other thing I have learned is to respect the clubs who want me, and those who don't want me".
The likes of Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford have looked like completely different players under the Norwegian interim boss, and it will be fascinating to hear what Mourinho has to say about their dramatic upturn in form.
It was suggested that Mourinho, whose very first managerial role came at Benfica, could head back to Portugal, but he insists that will not be the case.