Ed Woodward Manchester United
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Woodward hits out at ‘insulting’ comments about Manchester United’s ‘efficient’ structure

Manchester United chief Ed Woodward has hit out at ‘insulting’ comments regarding the structure of the club.

Woodward has long been a target by the club’s fans following their decline in recent seasons, with his lack of footballing experience often used as a stick to beat the former investment banker with.

Many believe that the executive vice-chairman should focus more on the club’s commercial success and allow someone with a footballing background to oversee first-team matters, though an inaugural director of football has still not been appointed.

Manchester United are currently enduring their worst start to a season in 30 years having won just twice in their opening eight league fixtures, however, Woodward has slammed the notion that the club have ‘non-football people’ making football decisions as a ‘myth’ and says the club have an ‘efficient’ structure in place to deliver success.

“There is a myth that we have non-football people making football decisions, and I think it’s insulting to the brilliant people who work on the football side in this club,” Woodward said.

“Many of the senior staff on the football side of the club have been in their roles for over 10 years. Some of our scouts have worked with us for more than 25 years. We’ve expanded our recruitment department in recent years, and we believe this now runs in an efficient and productive way.

“Player recommendations and decisions are worked on by this department and by the first-team manager and his staff, not by senior management.”

Woodward reiterated that the club’s main focus remains being committed to bringing success and silverware to the Old Trafford, but emphasised the commercial side of the club is also paramount as United look to remain competitive.

“The reality of Manchester United is we are a club in two parts,” Woodward added. “First of all, we are an incredible 141-year footballing institution with all that history, all that legacy, all that tradition and that tradition of success. That can never, ever change. We need to keep that protected.

“Then, like other football clubs, our commercial business allows us to reinvest in the football side. It’s how these two interact with each other at Manchester United that results in us having a competitive advantage in this area.

“What’s important is the commercial side is never allowed to take priority over the football side.”

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