Man Utd: Pundit accuses Ed Woodward of lying about transfers
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Manchester United chief Ed Woodward’s subtle change of language is hard to ignore ahead of today’s Premier League clash with Watford. The Red Devils supremo has stood by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer prior to the match at Vicarage Road. But another chastening day at the office could see the Norwegian relieved of his duties.
United go up against Watford today in desperate need of all three points.
It’s been a torrid campaign for Solskjaer and his side so far, despite the huge transfer backing the Norwegian received back in the summer.
And, ahead of the Premier League clash, Woodward has appeared to change his tune on Solskjaer.
In September, shortly after the arrivals of Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho, Woodward insisted the club were ‘more confident than ever’ they were on the right track.
“We significantly strengthened the squad over the summer, with the addition of Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane, Jadon Sancho and Tom Heaton,” he said at the time.
“These signings have demonstrated our continued ability to attract some of the world’s best footballers to Old Trafford, and our firm commitment to helping Ole deliver success on the pitch.
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“We have been clear in our strategy to build a squad with a blend of top-class recruits and homegrown talent, comprising a balance of youth and experience, with the aim of winning trophies and playing attacking football the Manchester United way.
“As part of this, we have continued to strengthen our recruitment and scouting processes, and we have also increased our investment in the academy, to ensure that this success is sustainable.
“While squad-building is a constant process, we are more confident than ever that we are on the right track.”
But when delivering United’s newest financial results in the week, Woodward toned down his language.
He merely stated that the Red Devils were just ‘determined’ to achieve success with the 48-year-old in charge.
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“While these financial results today demonstrate our resilience through the pandemic, our top priority is success on the pitch,” he said.
“The manager, players and everyone at the club are determined to achieve that objective.”
Determined, they may be.
But United are in freefall under Solskjaer, leading to talk of several options potentially taking over.
Brendan Rodgers and Mauricio Pochettino are both admired, though their commitments to Leicester and Paris Saint-Germain respectively make them difficult to obtain.
Likewise Erik ten Hag, who has stressed he’s happy at Ajax after nearly four years in charge.
And Luis Enrique is unlikely to leave his post as manager of the Spain national team, especially with the World Cup in Qatar next year creeping closer.
Solskjaer, meanwhile, has confirmed he’s spoken to the United hierarch ahead of this afternoon’s contest.
“Of course, I’ve been in contact and communicated with the club as I do all the time anyway,” he said.
“It’s been a long international break but it’s one that we’ve utilised to our benefit.
“We feel it’s been a good response from the players and we’re ready for the Watford game.
“International breaks are always periods to refresh and to keep working on different things and this time around we’ve had a few players having to pull out.
“So quite a few of them have been here doing individual sessions, recovery sessions, some players were allowed to go abroad to visit families.
“It’s always the case when everyone comes in everyone’s bright and ready.
“This week has been a good week, we’ve had a chance to work with everyone on quite a few things.”
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