Manchester United are growing increasingly confident of appointing Paris Saint-Germain boss Mauricio Pochettino as their permanent manager this summer.

The Argentine is thought to be the number one candidate to take the Old Trafford hotseat whenever Ralf Rangnick’s spell as interim coach comes to an end at the conclusion of the current campaign.

Rangnick is due to move upstairs at United into a two-year consultancy role regardless of results between now and the end of the campaign, with the club still in the Champions League and FA Cup alongside their pursuit of a top four spot.

Pochettino has been on United’s radar for several years but the stars have not aligned for the club to make an appointment – until now.

Having built up a strong reputation in England following sterling jobs with Southampton and Tottenham, things have not gone to plan for Pochettino at PSG – who are now prepared to let him leave.

he 49-year-old took over from Thomas Tuchel in January 2021 and, despite sitting 11 points clear at the top of Ligue 1, his time in Paris has been far from a happy one.

The failure to win the Ligue 1 title last year – beaten by outsiders Lille – was a low point, even if he had taken the helm with PSG languishing in third.

Pochettino did earn the first silverware of his managerial career by lifting the Trophée des Champions and Coupe de France, but they were merely a footnote in the season for PSG, geared towards conquering Europe for the first time in their history.

Impressive Champions League wins over Barcelona and Bayern Munich were followed by a semi-final exit to Manchester City – no disaster but a regression on the previous campaign, when Tuchel had guided the side to the showpiece event before falling to Bayern.

This summer’s transfer window cranked up expectations yet further – the arrival of Lionel Messi followed those of Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Achraf Hakimi, Nuno Mendes and Georginio Wijnaldum as PSG continued to pose as football’s version of the Harlem Globetrotters.