Manchester United target Campos: The club have not spoken to me

Yahoo Sport UK
Ed Woodward still wants to hire a Director of Football to work alongside Jose Mourinho at Manchester United
Ed Woodward still wants to hire a Director of Football to work alongside Jose Mourinho at Manchester United

Manchester United have not made any formal approach to Luis Campos regarding the English Premier League club’s plans to appoint a director of football. Hired by Jose Mourinho to head up his scouting staff at Real Madrid and central to the AS Monaco recruitment structure that developed the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Bernardo Silva, Thomas Lemar, Fabinho and Benjamin Mendy into elite Champions League players, Campos is an obvious candidate for the position, and a name likely to be favoured by the Old Trafford manager.

The proposed role is an entirely new one for United, who have explored the idea of restructuring the club’s hierarchy to include a sports director in recent years only to retain a traditional managerial structure. It is understood that the idea of introducing one to work alongside Mourinho has been under serious consideration for several months with its appeal increasing during a difficult summer transfer window.

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Contacted by Yahoo Sport on Thursday, Campos said: “Manchester United have not spoken to me about this position. But I’m very proud that my name is mentioned as one possibility because Manchester United have such a fantastic history in the world of football.”

Campos chose to formally step down from his position at Monaco in 2016, a year after helping the club to become the first to gross over €200million in a single transfer window (those deals included the sale for Anthony Martial to United for a then-record fee for a teenager). He currently holds the position of Advisor to the President/Sports Director at Ligue 1 Lille.

Luis Campos (right) is currently at Ligue 1 club Lille
Luis Campos (right) is currently at Ligue 1 club Lille

“My function is to make the link with the players, the coach and the board,” Campos said. “I develop the scouting team and its structure. I speak with the board to assess the economic opportunities for signing players. The coach develops the profile of the team, the type of players he needs for his tactics, and in tandem with the scouting team we suggest the best solutions on the market to fit the profile the coach requires.

“I have developed a large network worldwide. Normally, I build teams by using five players with experience and combining these with big talents who also have the potential to develop inside the club for its future.

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“It’s very important for a sports director to make the link with everybody within the club. To create the best infrastructure and provide the best support resources – for recovery, for nutrition, for data on player performance. Everything to help the coach and the players to deliver their best. This is how I work.”

United have indicated that they will look across the European game to fill the role. Other names mentioned as candidates for the position include English Football Association technical director Dan Ashworth, AS Roma sporting director Monchi, Juventus’ Fabio Paratici and Paul Mitchell, who was appointed as Leipzig’s Head of Recruitment and Development in February following successful spells at Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur.

Mourinho made his displeasure with a window in which his club added just one experienced signing to his first team clear on several occasions this summer, stating last week that “football is changing and managers should be called head coaches. I think we are more head coaches than managers”.

The decision of his long-term assistant Rui Faria to leave Old Trafford at the end of last season has altered the structure of his technical staff, depriving Mourinho of a trusted ally and resulting in the addition of three, relatively inexperienced, coaches. In that context, the proposed appointment of a director of football can be expected to take on additional significance.

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