Ed Woodward is said to have phoned Joel Glazer to inform him that he was stepping down as Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman after realising he’d made “the biggest mistake of his career”. The controversial club chief confirmed yesterday that he was stepping down from his role at the end of 2021 following a fierce backlash from supporters.
Woodward was heavily involved in the Big Six’s plans to form part of the breakaway European Super League, which has since folded like a deck of cards.
United confirmed last night in a statement on their official website that they were pulling out of the ESL.
That reality effectively made Woodward’s position untenable, given that he was a huge influence in United’s involvement.
Yet even he was unprepared to the fierce backlash the European Super League would receive from fans, as the club’s own supporters began to turn on United earlier this week.
JUST IN: Three Man Utd stars instrumental behind scenes in forcing European Super League withdrawal
According to The Daily Star, Woodward accepted his fate and has privately admitted this was “the biggest mistake of his career”.
There had been whispers that Woodward was already preparing to step down from his role but his hand has been forced in the past few days.
Joel Glazer allegedly tried talking Woodward out of his resignation but his decision was already final.
The 49-year-old from Chelmsford was also allegedly frustrated that none of the United hierarchy cared to explain why the club were involved in the Super League.
Woodward was of the belief that he was protecting United’s future and didn’t want them to get left behind.
Yet he was the only executive to address the players when the squad were informed of the move on Monday.
Although his resignation was received gratefully by supporters, he took the chance to address fans in a statement on the club’s website last night.
“I am extremely proud to have served United and it has been an honour to work for the world’s greatest football club for the past 16 years,” he said.
“The club is well-positioned for the future and it will be difficult to walk away at the end of the year.
“I will treasure the memories from my time at Old Trafford, during a period when we won the Europa League, the FA Cup and the EFL Cup. I am proud of the regeneration of the club’s culture and our return to the Manchester United way of playing.
“We have invested more than £1bn in the squad during my time here and I am particularly delighted with the progress the players have made under the astute leadership of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his coaching team in the last two years.
“I am sure that with the changes we have made on-field and to the coaching and football staff in recent years this great club will soon be lifting silverware again. It deserves to.
“I desperately wanted the club to win the Premier League during my tenure and I am certain the foundations are in place for us to win it back for our passionate fans.”