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'Really, really amazing': Jose Mourinho raved about Everton-linked manager in 2019

The search for the next Everton manager is under way after previous boss Carlo Ancelotti left earlier this week.

Ancelotti was Everton manager up until Tuesday, when he opted to take the reins at Real Madrid.

The Toffees have just finished a Premier League campaign that promised a lot but delivered very little.

However, there was optimism about next season, with world-renowned manager Ancelotti continuing to build a high-quality team.

That’s no longer the case, and Everton are back to square one looking for a new manager to take the Blues reins.

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The Blues are apparently after Nuno Espirito Santo, who recently parted company with Wolves.

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On Tuesday, Sky Sports claimed that Crystal Palace led the way for Nuno.

However, the same outlet then reported that the Toffees are planning talks with the Portuguese.

“Really, really fantastic”

Nuno was a goalkeeper during his playing days, and won the Champions League with Porto in 2004.

Jose Mourinho was Nuno’s manager at the time and, 15 years on, the two were in opposing Premier League dugouts.

Ahead of Tottenham’s trip to Wolves in December 2019, Mourinho had kind words for his compatriot.

“A much better manager than a player,” Mourinho jokingly told the Daily Mail.

“I’m not saying he was a bad player, I’m saying he is a much better coach than a player.

“I think he’ll be happy because he sees what he is now. And that’s the career he has now, he is not a player anymore. He is doing really, really amazing work.

“For me, he has one of the best teams from a tactical point of view. And when I say that, I’m not referring to the system they play, or it’s the best to play, or not the best to play.

“I’m saying that’s the way he wants to play and his team plays exactly the way he wants to play. His players are perfect for the puzzle.

“So the characteristics and qualities are perfectly adapted to the ideas he has for his team. So I think really, really fantastic work he is doing.”

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Nuno’s coaching career

The 47-year-old began his coaching career in 2010 and took his first managerial job two years later at Rio Ave.

Nuno spent two years at Rio Ave before joining Valencia, and two years later he moved to Porto.

In 2017, he joined Wolves, then in the Championship, and led them to the Premier League.

Wolves finished seventh in their first two seasons back, also reaching the Europa League quarter-finals in 2019-20.

However, they endured a tough 2020-21 season, finishing 13th with Raul Jimenez sidelined for much of the campaign.

According to Sky Sports, Nuno is keen on an immediate return to management.

He reportedly feels he has a point to prove after his sacking at Molineux.

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