(Reuters) - Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho vouched for fellow Portuguese Marco Silva’s competence and backed the new Hull City head coach to succeed ahead of Tuesday’s first leg of EFL Cup semi-final between the teams at Old Trafford.
Critics have questioned the process behind Hull’s appointment on Thursday of the 39-year old, who guided Portuguese club Estoril to second division title in 2012 before winning the Portuguese Cup with Sporting in 2015.
“He is known in Portugal as one of the good young coaches. He went to Greece and nobody knows what he did there,” Mourinho said of Silva.
”Nobody knows he was a champion and now he comes to the big one. It’s a big opportunity for him so I hope he loses three matches and wins every (other) one.
“He was not given a top job immediately. He did well at a small club in Portugal then he went to Sporting, one of the top three.”
Silva led Greek side Olympiacos to their 43rd league title last season that was capped by a run of 17 victories from the first matchday, a European record in the 21st century.
”In spite of being a young guy, he is very experienced and very mature and I look forward to having another Portuguese guy here.
“In this case, he is from a younger generation than myself and I would love him to do well but we all know it’s hard to jump when you are bottom of the Premier League,” Mourinho added.
After 20 games, Hull are at the bottom of the Premier League with 13 points, four away from safety.
Following Tuesday’s cup tie, Silva will shift focus on the league as his side host ninth-placed Bournemouth on Saturday.
Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty