Dodgy Tackle: Manchester United to cash in on Brand Jose

Manchester United fan Norma Smith holds up a Jose Mourinho scarf outside Old Trafford on Friday
Picture by PA 
Paul McConville

WHEN Wayne Rooney finally jacks in football, will he be on the look out for another career?

Given than today's footballers are multi-millionaires, opening a pub or selling insurance are no longer the natural career paths ex-players. Maybe Wayne could go into boxing or UFC, just as long as he steers clear of Phil Bardsley's killer right hand.

One thing's for sure, Wazza won't be following former footballer Vinny Jones into acting. The Man United skipper has been forced/handed a big wad of cash to bite the corporate bullet and appear in adverts for the Old Trafford club's commercial partners.

He gave a less than convincing performance in an ad for the club's official wine provider (no, not Alex Ferguson's cellar) and, in recent weeks, popped up among a bunch of freaks and outcasts (ah, now come on, that's not fair) in a trailer for the new X-Men movie. I suppose that's what happens when you have a chief executive more interested in a tying up a deal with the club's official instant noodle supplier than splashing out on a new centre-half.

Like the mountie in that ad for that beer which isn't Manchester United's official beer partner so we're not going to mention it, Ed Woodward finally got his man this week. The main stumbling block in completing the deal to bring Jose Mourinho to Old Trafford was the Portuguese's image rights.

A million commercial possibilities must have danced before Ed's eyes. It seems Chelsea had trademarked Jose's name for a whole host of merchandise, including lingerie. Yes, you can officially get your knickers in a twist in a pair of Jose Mourinho undies when the new United boss begins trolling Pep, Arsene, Claudio and co.

It's not clear how much United paid for Jose's image rights but, clearly, they think it's worth it to be able profit from Mourinho-branded cigar holders, lipstick, bathrobes, perfume, bath salts and jewellery - sounds like quite a weekend.

The eye-watering list of items Chelsea had image rights for reads like two full seasons of The Generation Game (ask your parents) - there's even a cuddly toy! The exhaustive list even contains galoshes which, following detailed research (okay, I googled it), turns out to be some sort of welly boot. Should come in handy in Manchester.

There's also the image rights for a Jose Mourinho schoolbag if United do fancy cashing in on their new manager's fame/notoriety (and let's face it, you know they will). You can send your child to school in a Mourinho satchel, where they'll probably linger around outside the class, gradually undermining the teacher's authority.

Your pride and joy will be taking the class by the end of the week.


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