May 10, 2021

‘The trunk of the tree is gone, now let’s go for the roots’ – Neville demands further action after Woodward’s Man Utd resignation


A former Red Devil has called for a complete overhaul of the club at boardroom level after the Super League controversy

Gary Neville has demanded further action at Manchester United after Ed Woodward’s resignation, insisting “the trunk of the tree is gone, now let’s go for the roots”.

United have joined Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham in pulling out of the Super League amid intense pressure from supporters across Europe over the last few days.

Woodward stepped down from his role as executive vice-chairman at Old Trafford shortly before the Red Devils withdrawal, and Neville now wants to see the club’s American owners follow suit.

What’s been said?

“The fact of the matter is that, not just Woodward, but every single executive that sits at the Premier League table, every single executive that’s on these UEFA or FIFA committees, they need throwing out of that club because there’s no way they can be trusted,” the United legend told Sky Sports.

“Ed Woodward knew his time in football was finished, probably this morning, and he’s probably done that to keep away from the criticism that would’ve come his way in the next few months.

“However, Ed Woodward is the trunk of the tree, we now need to go for the roots. I said last night I felt complicit, they’ve declared their hand.

“While they were sat at the club never making a statement, never showing their hands, never doing media conferences, yes they were taking money out of the club, yes they’ve leveraged against the club, there’s nothing we can do about that once the club became a PLC.

“They attacked every single football fan in this country with what they did. The Glazers have no place in Manchester anymore.

“We have to work hard together to ensure that ownership rules in this country are changed, that we have a system whereby this cannot happen. Whether that’s Government intervention, independent regulator, whether it be a fan-owned club rule, whatever it is – we have to make sure that this is the catalyst for change.

“The people have spoken. We were on the brink of anarchy if this continued.”

Why did Woodward resign?

Goal has learned that Woodward’s decision to vacate his seat in the Old Trafford boardroom was not down to the fierce reaction to his involvement in the proposed Super League formation.

The 49-year-old will continue in his role until the end of 2021, at which time he is confident that United will be in a strong position to re-establish themselves as a major force in both domestic and European competition.

What have the Glazers said?

The American family that owns United have not yet commented on the club’s decision to walk away from the Super League, but they did come forward to defend the plans for the continental competition earlier this week.

“By bringing together the world’s greatest clubs and players to play each other throughout the season, the Super League will open a new chapter for European football,” United co-chairman Joel Glazer said in a statement.

‘[It will] ensure world-class competition and facilities, and increased financial support for the wider football pyramid.”

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