REAL MADRID chiefs reckon Jose Mourinho is their best bet to replace Julen Lopetegui, according to reports.
Los Blancos are ready to swing the axe after a humiliating home defeat to Levante made it four losses in five games.
And El Chiringuito reporter Josep Pedrerol insists Manchester United chief Mourinho is being lined up for a sensational return.
He said: “If and when Lopetegui goes, Jose Mourinho is the man the Madrid directors want to replace him.”
Lopetegui has struggled since taking over from Zinedine Zidane, with Real sitting seventh in La Liga.
He welcomes minnows Viktoria Plzen to the Bernabeu tomorrow before heading to Barcelona for El Clasico on Sunday.
Florentino Perez is believed to be waiting for the right time to get rid of Lopetegui, with Antonio Conte, Santiago Solari and Arsene Wenger among the bookies favourites to take over.
Mourinho – who won La Liga with Real in 2012 – before being sacked the following year would be a surprise choice.
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The United boss referred to his final season in Spain as the “worst of my career” after regularly clashing with club officials, journalists and his own players.
His team currently sit 10th in the Premier League after Chelsea fought back to earn a last-gasp draw – sparking a controversial incident on the touchline.