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Dan Ashworth explains two biggest sporting director priorities as Manchester United confirm move



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Credit: Newcastle

Dan Ashworth has officially joined Manchester United as the club’s new sporting director following an agreement with Newcastle United.

After a lengthy saga that seemed destined for arbitration, the clubs reached an agreement this week, allowing Ashworth to begin his role at Old Trafford immediately.

The 53-year-old will lead the sporting project at United, working alongside technical director Jason Wilcox. Omar Berrada will assume his position as chief executive in two weeks.

Newcastle United and Manchester United have reached an agreement for the immediate release of Dan Ashworth from his contractual obligations at Newcastle United,” a club statement read.

“The terms of this agreement remain confidential between the clubs. Newcastle United thanks Dan for his services and wishes him well for the future.”

The news will be a massive boost for Sir Jim Ratcliffe and the club, as many did not expect him to be in place for this transfer window.

Ashworth will need to get up to speed quickly, and he has already explained what his two biggest priorities are when coming into a new job.

Speaking to NUFCTV after joining Newcastle in 2022, he said: “The most important thing for me is to understand who’s in place, the culture, where everybody fits, what’s going really well, what’s going on where maybe we have a few gaps and try and bring that together.

“We’re about to start a transfer window, so there will be a lot of things on the to-do list with players in and out – things Eddie will want to do for the first-team squad. Within time, it’s about understanding the medical department, the academy, loans, the women’s team and other things across the remit of the sporting director.

“The two most important things for me at the moment are to try and understand and get to know all the staff, how the club functions and the culture here and then short-term, help drive the transfer window for the next three months.”

“It’s very similar to my role as technical director at my previous employment. I always describe it as sitting in the middle of the wheel. My job is to sit in the middle of the wheel and connect the different departments of the club and align everything as best as I possibly can.”

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