The Sunday Times says his prime target is the United job. Mourinho developed a strong personal relationship with Sir Alex Ferguson and has been given reason to believe the Scot will play a significant role in appointing his successor. While Ferguson, 67, has set no firm date for his departure, there have been indications that he will go after winning one more European Cup. He has said he will not be doing the job at the age of 70.
However, Mourinho sought to reassure Inter yesterday that he was staying, without actually denying the words quoted in Saturday's article were his.
"I am very sorry a sincere tribute to Sir Alex Ferguson has been used in bits in a media outlet and in a different way from which my input was requested and above all with totally different aims," Mourinho told Inter's website. "As you can read from a correct translation of some of my quotes, I explained I love Inter, I am happy at Inter and that I am building for Inter. This is the reality and will be so until the end of my contract."
His contract runs until 2012.
Mourinho's interest in taking over United has affected his thinking on managing Manchester's other club. He was asked twice last season if he would be prepared to replace Mark Hughes as the Manchester City manager, but declined both times.