Manchester United’s title win in 2013 was glorious. We did not know how good we really had it.
Sir Alex Ferguson then announced his resignation weeks later, stepping down from the club along with David Gill.
A new man was made chief executive, Ed Woodward. And it was a total disaster. The Guardian reported last night that eight years later, Woodward is to finally step down.
The only disappointment is having to wait until the end of 2021. But lets focus on the positives, and hope that is sped along.
Never the right man
Woodward was a novice in the role, and joined David Moyes, who was out of his depth as United manager and needed an experienced figure like David Gill to steer him.
He got Woodward, who chased big name targets and failed, lacking the nous and know-how to deliver and be taken seriously by big clubs, when United suddenly lacked a big name manager to attract the players.
Woodward made some improvements in the transfer market after a poor first summer, but it was a truly scattergun approach. United never recovered from his first two years in charge.
He made his name as a banker, not in football. And his lack of knowledge of the game always shone through.
Woodward did make some unique commercial deals, and for this, he deserves some credit. But he never did cede control to anybody on the football side of things.
Even in promoting John Murtough to director of football, he chose a figure internal to the club, who would not threaten his power. A recent report from The Mail stated that it was Woodward and Murtough who held a meeting with Edinson Cavani over his future, showing that Ed just couldn’t let go.
Well, he has now, and this is United’s finest day since the title win in 2013.
This overshadows everything
This is more significant for the club than the 2016 FA Cup win. Ed Woodward even ruined that by firing Louis van Gaal hours after the game.
The 2017 League Cup and Europa League double were false dawns, and Ed Woodward refused to back Jose Mourinho in the transfer market in 2018.
For better or worse, Woodward should have found a compromise. Instead he yielded too much power.
Now finally he is gone, or going, this is the clean break United needed.
A football man has to go to the top, not another banker. Ed had eight years and failed to win the title.
Perhaps United were closer than ever during his time in charge, at the moment he resigned. But it was despite him, and not because of him.
If he had properly backed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the transfer market last summer, United could be top of the table right now.
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