Man United hires Ashworth from Newcastle as sporting director

Manchester United hired Dan Ashworth as sporting director on Monday to complete a trio of recent executive appointments as new co-owner Jim Ratcliffe attempts to revive the fortunes of the once dominant English Premier League club.

Ashworth joins from Newcastle after months of negotiations and will start immediately, United said.

He follows the hires of former Man City executive Omar Berrada as CEO and Jason Wilcox as technical director.

“Newcastle United and Manchester United have reached an agreement for the immediate release of Dan Ashworth from his contractual obligations at Newcastle United,” the clubs said in a joint statement. “The terms of this agreement remain confidential between the clubs.”

Ratcliffe assumed control of United’s failing soccer operations in February when he secured an initial 25% stake in the storied club, which is majority-owned by Americans the Glazer family.

He has declared his intention to lead the club back to the top of European soccer after onfield decline since iconic manager Alex Ferguson retired in 2013. United hasn’t won the English league since then.

Ratcliffe is the owner of petrochemicals giants INEOS and one of the richest people in Britain. He has quickly gone about overhauling the club since his investment, which will eventually rise to 27.7%.

Dave Brailsford and Jean-Claude Blanc, key figures from Ratcliffe’s INEOS Sport, have joined United’s soccer board.

Recent departures have included former CEO Richard Arnold, who stepped down in November, and football director John Murtough, who left in April.

Manager Erik ten Hag remained at the club after winning the FA Cup last season, his second trophy in as many years. The Dutchman is in negotiations to extend his contract.


James Robson is at


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