Former investment banker Ed Woodward will take on the top executive role
at Manchester United from July, working with manager Sir Alex Ferguson to
hire new players for the 19-times English champions.
who joined the club in 2005 after its takeover by the American Glazer
family in a controversial 790 million pounds deal,
replaces long-serving chief executive David Gill who is stepping down
after a decade in the role, the club said on Wednesday.
Woodward will retain the title of executive vice chairman but take on the duties vacated by Gill, 55.
40-year-old Briton, Woodward worked with the Glazers on their takeover
of the club when he was a banker with JP Morgan and then joined United
where he helped to organise the club's successful commercial expansion.
played a prominent role in United's $2.3 billion flotation on the New
York Stock Exchange last August and has recently been hosting conference
calls with investors when the club publishes its financial results
every three months.
of United's reorganisation, commercial director Richard Arnold, who has
done a series of sponsorship deals around the world, is promoted to the
role of managing director.
regularly attract crowds of 75,000 to their Old Trafford home and
claim to have more than 650 million followers across the globe - making
them one of the world's most popular football clubs.
and investors who have bought shares in the club will be keen to see
how Woodward gets on with Ferguson, the Scot who has managed United
since 1986 and led the club to 12 Premier League titles and two European
Champions League triumphs.
Ferguson, 71, said he was sorry that Gill was leaving but welcomed the appointment of Woodward.
is a young man with the energy and drive to help keep United at the
forefront of the game and to help us maintain our success on the field,"
he said in a statement.
role will involve helping to agree transfer fees and wage packages for
new additions to a squad that includes England forward Wayne Rooney and
Netherlands striker Robin van Persie.
vocal section of United supporters accused the Glazers of overloading
the club with debt and harming its chances of competing with the top
teams in Europe.
barren season in 2011/12, the signing of Van Persie from Arsenal last
August for a fee put at 24 million pounds by local media has helped to
silence the critics.
lead the Premier League by 12 points and are well placed to reach the
last eight of the Champions League after a 1-1 draw with fellow European
heavyweights Real Madrid in Spain last week.
55, joined United in February 1997 as finance director and has been
chief executive since 2003. He will remain a club director.
has been moving more into the politics of the game, having been
appointed vice chairman of the English Football Association last year,
and will seek a place on the executive committee of UEFA, European football's ruling body, in elections scheduled for May.
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