The poorly-received and possibly short-lived European Super League caused a lot of grief for a large faction of Manchester United supporters, but the idea’s unpopularity may’ve caused the exit of one of the club’s lightning rods.
Ed Woodward has reportedly resigned as executive vice chairman of Manchester United, according to multiple reports, and will leave the club at the end of the year.
He was reportedly expected to leave on Dec. 31 but the announcement “has been brought forward” due to the colossal consternation caused by the announcement that United was one of 12 teams to commit to the ESL.
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Woodward, 49, joined United when he helped negotiate the Glazer family’s takeover of the club in 2005. He quickly became a massive piece of the club, running the commercial side of the club and being named to the board of directors in 2012.
But he’s become increasingly vilified in recent years as the club has not adopted a director of football and fallen off its pedestal as one of the very top teams in Europe.
Woodward had claimed that United’s finances were hit heavily by COVID-19 and perhaps saw the ESL as a solution.
He has also been a huge proponent of manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Ex-manager Louis van Gaal had described Woodward as a man with “zero understanding of football” and some fans flew a plane over the stadium protesting Woodward and the clubs perceived lack of transfer support during the Jose Mourinho era.