Manchester United have confirmed the appointment of José Mourinho as their new manager.

The club published a statement on their website on Friday confirming the Portuguese has signed a three-year contract. Mourinho replaces Louis Van Gaal who was sacked on Monday.

“José Mourinho will take over as manager of Manchester United from the 2016/17 season, signing a three-year contract with an option to stay at the club until at least 2020,” read a statement on United’s website.

“José, 53, has managed at the top level of European football for over a decade and in that time has won league titles and cups in four countries [Portugal, England, Italy and Spain], as well as winning the Uefa Champions League twice – in 2004 with FC Porto and in 2010 with Inter Milan.”

Confirming the appointment, United’s executive vice-chairman, Ed Woodward, said: “José is quite simply the best manager in the game today. He has won trophies and inspired players in countries across Europe and, of course, he knows the Premier League very well, having won three titles here.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to welcome him to Manchester United. His track record of success is ideal to take the club forward.”

The 53-year-old has been given the task of reviving the 20-time champions of England. Mourinho said he was honoured to be appointred by United.

“To become Manchester United manager is a special honour in the game,” he said. “It is a club known and admired throughout the world. There is a mystique and a romance about it which no other club can match.

“I have always felt an affinity with Old Trafford; it has hosted some important memories for me in my career and I have always enjoyed a rapport with the United fans. I’m looking forward to being their manager and enjoying their magnificent support in the coming years.”

Mourinho has been out of work since last December when he was sacked by Chelsea. He is understood to have turned down other jobs in the hope of being offerered the United position.

Mourinho’s first match as United manager will be the pre-season encounter with Borussia Dortmund in China on 22 July.

Van Gaal was sacked by United on Monday just 48 hours after he led them to victory in last weekend’s FA Cup final.