Jose Mourinho has predicted he will be Manchester United manager for at least three years as long as he is wanted.
The Portuguese also suggested complacency during Sir Alex Ferguson’s reign may have boosted their Premier League rivals.
Since Ferguson’s retirement in 2013, the only major trophies United have won are last season’s FA Cup and this year’s EFL Cup and Mourinho has been charged with bringing regular success back to Old Trafford.
However, his side are currently battling to secure Champions League qualification – either by finishing in the Premier League’s top four or winning the Europa League. Ahead of their Sunday lunchtime game against Middlesbrough, United sit seventh in the Premier League table, six points off fourth.
Speaking to Portuguese TV channel SIC, Mourinho said: “A minimum of three years, I think I will be here, I think the club understood the necessity to give stability to all levels.
“I believe if we do that, even without a massive success, which is harder in football, even more so in England, but with some type of success, I see myself staying here if they want me to stay.
“If they want me to stay I will stay, but like I say, we both need to be happy. I’m not a type of person to be at a club for 10, 15 years, without real success.
“I need to have true success, my life is like that, I need that pride and happiness. In all honesty, I would like things to go well and be here many years.”
United have been the dominant force of the Premier League era, winning 13 titles and two Champions Leagues, but in recent times have falling down the pecking order with local rivals Manchester City and Chelsea dominating the domestic stage while Tottenham have also emerged as title contenders.
“I think the club got so used to winning and having success, maybe they didn’t realise other clubs were growing, even when Sir Alex was in his last years at the club,” he added.
“The Premier League were creating conditions for the other clubs to become financially powerful and that has definitely transformed the league.
“Nowadays all clubs have grown and with TV rights being shared, it’s almost unique in European football.
“It has allowed that difference in power to be slowly diluted, in a way that Manchester United stopped being the all-powerful Manchester United, and became part of a group of five, six, seven very powerful clubs. They are followed by other clubs, less powerful, but not poor clubs.
“United had a bit of everything happening at the same time. The exit of Sir Alex, unique and more than just a manager, the change of powers in the Premier League and a period of instability at Old Trafford; three managers in three years if you count Ryan Giggs.
“It was a period of some instability, disbelief and even distance with the fans.”