Mauricio Pochettino has previously waxed lyrical about the professionalism of Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo, amid the news that he is understood to be open to becoming the club's next manager.

United, following Saturday afternoon's 4-1 defeat to Watford at Vicarage Road, made the decision to sack Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Sunday morning, meaning the club is now on the hunt for its fifth permanent manager since Sir Alex Ferguson's exit in 2013.

Michael Carrick has been placed in temporary charge until the club sources an interim boss to take United through until the end of the campaign. The club then has plans to appoint a permanent manager to open United's next chapter next summer, prior to the start of the 2022/23 campaign.

Paris Saint-Germain boss Pochettino has been installed as one of the early favourites to make the switch to Old Trafford and, as reported by the Manchester Evening News, he is open to the prospect of succeeding Solskjaer.

If United were to make their move for the former Tottenham Hotspur chief and successfully lure him to Manchester, he would be presented with the chance to work with Ronaldo - something every football coach most probably dreams of.

Pochettino hailed the Portuguese star's professionalism and desire to succeed back in 2017, insisting the United ace has set an example that every other player should follow.

Pochettino said: "He has been awarded ‘The Best’ and the truth is that he deserves it.

"In addition to his qualities as a professional, he is an example. He never tires of repeating that the secret is to work hard, to strive, to take care of himself.

"Every player should apply it."

At the time of making his admission about Ronaldo, Pochettino was working with Harry Kane at Spurs. Kane was in sensational form at the time and was becoming central to everything that the north London club did, just as Ronaldo so often did at Real Madrid at the time.

"I do not know Cristiano in depth, but he gives me the same feeling as Harry," Pochettino continued. "They are very similar in terms of professionalism.

"They understand that we must strive to achieve success. He [Kane] has a similar mentality."