REBORN Fred has had the last laugh over Jose Mourinho – after the former Manchester United boss warned him: “Your days at this club are numbered.”
The Brazil midfielder is now a key player for the Red Devils despite initially becoming a symbol of the Old Trafford giants’ decline.
He was signed by Mourinho from Shakhtar Donetsk for £52million in the summer of 2018 but struggled to find his feet and made only 17 Premier League appearances.
And, with Mourinho feeling the heat from fans, the Telegraph claim the Special One lost his patience with Fred after subbing him a during a 2-1 home defeat to Valencia in the Champions League.
He took the ace aside and said “your days at this club are numbered” – only for Mourinho himself to be axed just six days later.
But Fred has gone on to establish himself in United’s midfield this season, racking up 37 appearances, while Mourinho is once again under pressure at Tottenham.
Spurs laboured to a 1-1 draw at Burnley on Saturday after losing two Premier League games in a row.
They also went out of the FA cup at home to Norwich in a penalty shootout, with Eric Dier rushing into the crowd after the final whistle to confront a fan who he claimed abused his brother.
Spurs fans remain largely unconvinced Mourinho’s negative tactics and divisive personality well help the club move forward from the reign of Mauricio Pochettino.
The North London club now face a tricky Champions League last-16 tie away to RB Leipzig on Tuesday, trailing 1-0 from the first leg.
In contrast, Fred is flourishing at United, scoring twice as they hammered Club Brugge 5-0 to make the last 16 of the Europa League.
Mourinho is infamous for his abrasive style of management and blasted Spurs midfielder Tanguy Ndombele at Turf Moor after taking him off at half-time.
He said: “In the first half we didn’t have a midfield.
“Of course I’m not speaking of Skipp because he’s a kid of 19 who’s played two hours in the last few days. I don’t criticise him at all.
“But I’m not going to run away and I have to say Ndombele has had enough time to come to a different level.
“I know the Premier League is difficult, and some players take a long time to adapt to a different league.
“But a player with his potential has to give us more than he is giving us, especially when you see how Lucas, Lo Celso and those players are playing. I was expecting more in the first half from him.”