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Portugal appoint former Belgium boss Martinez as new head coach to end Mourinho rumours

6:09 PM IST 09/01/23
Roberto Martinez Belgium
Portugal have confirmed the appointment of Roberto Martinez as their new head coach, bringing links with Jose Mourinho to an end.
  • Spaniard left Red Devils post after 2022 World Cup
  • Succeeds Santos in another prominent role
  • Decision to make on Ronaldo's future

WHAT HAPPENED? The 49-year-old Spaniard was last in charge of the Belgium national team, with a six-year stint at the Red Devils brought to a close after suffering a group stage exit at the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Martinez was able to guide Belgium to the top of the FIFA world rankings while working with a so-called ‘Golden Generation’, but major honours proved elusive for the coach, who previously spent time in club management with Swansea, Wigan and Everton.

AND WHAT'S MORE?: There had been suggestions that Portugal, who saw Euro 2016 winner Fernando Santos vacate his post after a the World Cup, would target Jose Mourinho as their new manager. The outspoken Portuguese tactician is, however, currently in charge of Serie A giants Roma and no job-share option has been presented to him.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT NEXT? One big decision for Martinez to make within the opening months of his tenure concerns the international future of Cristiano Ronaldo. The 37-year-old – who has 196 caps for his country and is the all-time leading goalscorer in men’s international football – was benched at Qatar 2022 as questions continue to be asked of his ability to influence games at the very highest level.