Ed Woodard Expresses Gratitude to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Comments on Manager Search

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Happy Valentine’s Day Manchester United fans- embrace the holiday spirit by reading and analyzing the news surrounding Club CEO Ed Woodward holding an investor conference call today. After all, what’s more romantic than some fiscal ledger sheets?

That’s a little joke of course, but in all seriousness, Woodward did make a lot of news today, by finally breaking his silence on the topic of the managerial and football director searches. Woodward, whose official title is Executive Vice President, sacked Jose Mourinho on December 19, and appointed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer interim boss for the rest of the season the very next day.

Solskjaer has enjoyed a phenomenal run of form, and Woodward expressed his gratitude for that; adding that he anticipates the season ending on a high note at United.

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“The appointment of Ole and Mike as caretaker manager and assistant manager, working with Kieran, Michael and Emilio, has had a positive impact throughout the club,” a statement attributed to Woodward attached to United’s quarterly financial results reads.

“We are delighted with the improvement in the team’s performances since December and we look forward to a strong finish to the 18/19 season.”

Solskjaer has won 10 of the 12 matches that he’s been in charge, but that hasn’t been enough to earn him the managerial gig full time, at least not yet. Woodward confirmed that nothing has changed in regards to the managerial situation, and he refused to be drawn into any further discussion on it while on conference call.

“I’m not going to get into [that],” he told investors. “We communicated around December time around what we were doing, with Ole coming in, and what was happening.”

“The next communication will be when we have something to announce regarding the manager. We’re not going to give updates part way through.”

Solskjaer’s chief rival for the job has long reportedly been Mauricio Pochettino, but Zinedine Zidane and Max Allegri could also be potential candidates.

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United are also understood to be looking to appoint a new position, a club football director who could be influential in transfer policy, and work with the field manager. The new position would likely bridge the gaps between the football and business ends of the club. Woodward was evasive and coy on this topic, responding with only just corporatespeak and business industry jargon.

According to Goal: “Former goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel and RB Leipzig sporting director Paul Mitchell are two of the names linked with the new role at Old Trafford.”

On the business end of things, MUFC posted record revenues of £206.6 million for the second quarter of the fiscal year and project their revenue for 2018-19 to be between £615 million and £630 million.

They also revealed how sacking Mourinho will cost them £19.6 million! So Mourinho is getting paid a ton of money to not be working for them any more.

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Of course, it’s still just a tiny percentage of the money the club is making right now though. Everything is relative.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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