United 'expected to announced Woodward's replacement within weeks'

Manchester United ‘are expected to announce Richard Arnold – the club’s group managing director – as Ed Woodward’s replacement’ after their executive vice chairman quit in the wake of the Super League debacle

  • Richard Arnold is the man who has been seemingly earmarked for the role 

Manchester United are reportedly close to unveiling a successor to outgoing chief executive Ed Woodward.

The 49-year-old, who advised the Glazer family on their takeover of the Red Devils in 2005 and became CEO of the club in 2013, has received constant criticism during his time at the helm, most recently following United’s disastrous attempt to join the European Super League.

Following the debacle, Woodward announced that he would leave his current role at the end of the year, with his replacement expected to be Richard Arnold, according to Sky News.

Ed Woodward will step down as Manchester United CEO after a difficult eight years in the role

A source told the news outlet that a statement confirming Arnold’s arrival could be made within weeks, although the decision is yet to be formally agreed and he is reportedly vying with two other club executives for the position.

If Arnold is successful, he is likely to take on the title of chief executive rather than Woodward’s official title of executive vice-chairman.

After graduating from the University of Bristol in 1993 with a BSc in Biology, Mathematics, Economics and Accounting, Arnold spent six years at PwC, where he worked his way up to the role of senior manager before becoming finance director at GC Europe Ltd. 

He then enjoyed five years as managing director at Intervoice Group, where he says on his LinkedIn page that he turned the company from a ‘loss-making to a profitable business’, something that will be music to the ears of United fans.

Arnold was recruited by United as commercial director in 2007 before assuming the role of group managing director in 2013 and becoming board chairman of the club’s foundation a year after that. 

The fury among fans at United’s attempt to join the ESL was just the latest in a long list of gripes levelled at Woodward. 

Shortly after his arrival as CEO, he was criticised for United’s failed summer transfer window after the only name of note who arrived was Marouane Fellaini as David Moyes tried – and ultimately failed – to continue the success of the Sir Alex Ferguson era. 

Jose Mourinho also aimed digs at Woodward for not going after the players he wanted and moving too slowly to strengthen the squad. 

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