Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal insists the club's hierarchy would tell him if they had spoken to Jose Mourinho - and he refuses to believe talks have taken place.
Towards the end of a week in which newspaper reports claimed it is a 'done deal' that Mourinho will take over at Old Trafford in the summer, Van Gaal admits the publicity has irked him.
But the Dutchman remains defiant and Sky sources understand Manchester United remain happy with their manager.
In an interview with The Independent, Van Gaal said: "I have spoken with [executive vice-chairman] Ed Woodward and I cannot imagine that he and Jose Mourinho have spoken with each other.
"I think that if they speak with another manager, they would tell me because our relationship is like that.
"If they want to change, they have to prepare themselves. That is also my professional attitude, in my opinion. If they are thinking that they want to replace me, they have to enquire. But, if it is like that, they have to say it to me and I believe they will tell me if it is like that.
"I not only have a strong relationship with Ed, but also with the Glazers. I have a good feeling with them, and that is why I am annoyed with all the publicity. I have 'been sacked' three times and now it is about negotiations starting with Mourinho. The next time it will be another manager."
Van Gaal admits he has a "provocative" relationship with the media.
"I am used to a lot of criticism," he said. "My performances in the media are also provocative, but I have had to cope with the criticism from the first time I was a coach.
"For me, it is not any more stress or bother to have to deal with it. That is because, with the way I speak, my players are always protected. It is always against Louis van Gaal, it is never against my players, so that is a benefit of how I talk in the media."