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Legendary Man United goalkeeper not expecting to replace Ed Woodward at the club

Edwin van der Sar is a legend at Manchester United. Image: BSR/SOCCRATES
Edwin van der Sar is a legend at Manchester United. Image: BSR/SOCCRATES

Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar unlikely to take over from Ed Woodward at Manchester United

According to Dutch reporter Elko Born (h/t Daily Star), Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar has insisted that he does not expect to be called to replace Ed Woodward at Manchester United.

The executive vice-chairman of the Old Trafford outfit is set to leave soon. His management since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson has not been well-received as he has masterminded a number of hefty transfer windows but is yet to deliver the Premier League title or the Champions League trophy.

It was announced in April that he would leave the club following the European Super League debacle. Edwin van der Sar was one of the names listed as a potential successor to the Man United chief. 

Ed Woodward is set to depart Manchester United soon. (imago Images)
Ed Woodward is set to depart Manchester United soon. (imago Images)

However, the former Man United goalkeeper has insisted that he does not expect to be called up for the job. But earlier in the week, he told Dutch channel RLT7, as quoted by the Daily Star, that he believes one day he shall return to Old Trafford. 

“I am enjoying myself so much at Ajax. I still have two years left here. But I am sure that one day the moment will arrive.”

Time for Richard Arnold?

Van der Sar has done a great job at Ajax, and his eye for transfers and general management of the club has been sound. The appointment at Man United is quite a step-up, but one cannot rule out that he could be in an upper management position at the club in the coming years.

However, Richard Arnold is likely to take over from Woodward. He has been pivotal in sealing several commercial deals and sponsorship contracts over the last 10 years. His work in orchestrating the $600million Chevrolet deal and £750million contract with Adidas, in particular, has been appreciated.

Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar is not expecting to be called to replace Ed Woodward at Manchester United.
Ajax chief Edwin van der Sar is not expecting to be called to replace Ed Woodward at Manchester United. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

He would be yet another commercial man in charge of football operations, it seems. However, it is too early to judge him. It remains to be seen who Arnold trusts within his cabinet and which particular people would be delegated with what responsibilities under him.

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Ralf Rangnick has already been handed a consultancy job once his work as an interim manager is completed at the end of the season. Thus, there is a clear path, and fans can take some solace in the fact that Woodward shall finally depart the club.

It will be in line with the feeling of a genuine rebuild at the club, the likes of which we haven’t seen in a while. With a new manager and a new vice-executive chairman set to lead Man United by next year, whoever they turn out to be, it seems like it’s finally our time to focus on building a dynasty rather than look for short-term solutions without keeping the big picture in mind.

Written by Varun Pai

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