José Mourinho returning to Serie A with Roma

José Mourinho

ROME (AP) — José Mourinho was hired Tuesday to coach Italian club Roma starting next season.

The move came a few hours after the club’s American owners announced that current coach Paulo Fonseca will depart at the end of this season. Mourinho’s contract is for three seasons.

“We are thrilled and delighted to welcome José Mourinho into the AS Roma family,” club president Dan Friedkin and vice president Ryan Friedkin said. “A great champion who has won trophies at every level, José will provide tremendous leadership and experience to our ambitious project.

“The appointment of José is a huge step in building a long-term and consistent winning culture throughout the club.”

Mourinho previously coached in Serie A at Inter Milan, leading the Nerazzurri to a treble of titles in 2010 that included the Champions League.

Mourinho has also coached Porto, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Manchester United and Tottenham, from which he was fired last month.

“After meetings with the ownership and (Roma general manager) Tiago Pinto, I immediately understood the full extent of their ambitions for AS Roma,” Mourinho said. “It is the same ambition and drive that has always motivated me and together we want to build a winning project over the upcoming years.

“The incredible passion of the Roma fans convinced me to accept the job and I cannot wait to start next season.”

With Roma in seventh place in Serie A, Fonseca was already under pressure entering the Europa League semifinals. Roma lost at Manchester United 6-2 last week in the first leg.

Fonseca will still coach Roma during the second leg at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday, as well as the remaining four games in Serie A this season.

“I wish Paulo Fonseca all the best and I hope the media appreciate that I will only speak further in due course,” Mourinho said, before adding a cheer in the local dialect: “Daje Roma!”