Barnsley turn to old pal of Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho as new head coach

New Barnsley boss Jose Morais (left) alongside Jose Mourinho in their days at Chelsea. PA Wire
New Barnsley boss Jose Morais (left) alongside Jose Mourinho in their days at Chelsea. PA Wire
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Barnsley have appointed Jose Mourinho’s former right-hand man Jose Morais as their new head coach.

The Championship strugglers have been searching for a new man since Paul Heckingbottom’s untimely exit for rivals Leeds United last week.

Barnsley’s top brass spoke to a whole host of candidates, with Morais standing out and signing an 18-month contract yesterday.

The 52-year-old memorably worked with the Manchester United boss during Inter Milan’s historic Serie A, Coppa Italia and Champions League treble in 2009/10. The pair then enjoyed success at Real Madrid and Chelsea together respectively.

Morais was invited to last week’s Sheffield Wednesday game.

And Tykes’ Chief Executive Gauthier Ganaye said: “We’re really, really pleased to have secured the club’s number one target from the start of the process.

“To be fully transparent, we ran a fair and full interview process. We spoke to a lot of head coaches who were both in and out of employment. The unanimous decision was to appoint Jose who instilled the full board with the belief that he is the right man to lead us up the table.”

Morais’ head coach credentials include Tunisia’s Esperance, Al-Shabab, Antalyaspor and AEK Athens.

His wealth of experience saw him picked as the man to try and secure the Reds’ Championship status. The club are currently in the relegation zone, with a vital run of games against teams immediately around them coming up. He took training at Oakwell yesterday and has time to get to know his squad before Tuesday’s relegation crunch game against Burton Albion.

It looked as though the Reds were unlikely to get someone in before the Burton game – which was the plan all along.

St Mirren boss Jack Ross withdrew himself from the running amid talks of an improved deal with the Scottish side.

And the Reds were also knocked back in their approach to talk to Wycombe Wanderers’ boss Gareth Ainsworth.