Man United legend backs Richard Arnold.
New Manchester United CEO Richard Arnold has received the backing of the club’s legendary goalkeeper Peter Schmiechel.
It was confirmed on Thursday that Arnold will take over from Ed Woodward, who has been executive vice-chairman at the Old Trafford club since 2013, on February 1st.
Ed Woodward’s disastrous Man United spell.
It’s fair to say that Woodward never truly endeared himself to the majority of the United fanbase, with a series of poor managerial decisions, combined with a conveyor belt of big-money flops, contributing to eight long years without a proper Premier League title challenge.
There was also his involvement European Super League fiasco of last spring, which led to the Red Devils’ match against Liverpool in May being postponed, as fans invaded the pitch at the behind-closed-doors game prior to kick-off.
50-year-old Arnold joined Man United in 2007 and has been key in bringing in revenue through a number of commercial partnerships, while also being credited with improving relationships with supporters in the wake of the Super League controversy.
Peter Schmeichel: “Arnold knows what Man United means.”
While some will see him as ‘Woodward 2.0,’ Schmeichel’s words may provide some comfort to those who doubt Arnold’s capabilities.
“There was probably a time when the Glazer family’s understanding of the institution they own was not up to the level it should have been and certain people were excluded from the director’s box, but all that has been corrected,” Schmeichel writes.
“Richard Arnold, who runs Manchester United on a daily basis, arrived from a commercial background but has grown to understand exactly what United means.
“You have Matt Busby’s family still around on matchdays and Fergie has his seat in the box,” the Danish stopper continues, in reference to United’s two most decorated former managers.
“I am one of a number of former players used as a club ambassador and the club has become better at tapping into its own, if you like, family stock.”
The mess Richard Arnold inherits.
That last line shows why Schmeichel’s ringing endorsement of Arnold and the Glazers should probably be taken with a pinch of salt, given that he is on the payroll at Old Trafford.
Still, there will be many supporters who feel that anyone is better than Woodward, and Arnold is sure to appreciate such kind words from one of the club’s former players.
Man United’s current mess is going to difficult to fix and the number one priority for Arnold should be to hire the right manager this summer and get the club performing on the pitch again.
Because right now, under interim boss Ralf Rangnick, that just isn’t happening.