Connect with us


Newcastle legend responds to Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s “completely stupid” Dan Ashworth dig



| Last Updated:


Newcastle legend Alan Shearer has responded following Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s latest swipe in relation to Manchester United’s sporting director target Dan Ashworth.

Ratcliffe’s stake in Manchester United was confirmed earlier this week, and the 71-year-old has already started making major moves at Old Trafford.

The British billionaire has already brought in Omar Berrada from Manchester City as the club’s new CEO, following Richard Arnold’s departure.

They are now looking at adding a sporting director to the new-look INEOS regime and Dan Ashworth is the main man on the radar. The former Brighton and FA expert has been placed on gardening leave by current club Newcastle after he told them he wanted to join United.

However, the Geordie club are demanding that United pay them a £20 million compensation fee, otherwise Ashworth would not be able to officially join the club until his gardening period ends in 20 months.

“It’s a bit silly, personally. I won’t get dragged into that,” was Ratcliffe’s reply when asked how he felt about Newcastle’s reaction.

“What I do think is completely absurd is suggesting a man who is really good at his job sits in his garden for one-and-a-half years. That’s completely stupid.”

He continued: “We had a very grown-up conversation with Manchester City about Omar. They were very, very disappointed in Omar’s decision but Omar again went for the same reasons. But we had a very grown-up conversation.”

Alan Shearer has since addressed the situation and believes that it would be ‘naive’ to believe that Ashworth would not begin his work earlier at Old Trafford no matter the length of time he would need to wait to join in an official capacity.

“Newcastle did that to Brighton in terms of they wanted him badly at the football club, he had to go on gardening leave at Brighton before he could then take over at Newcastle. But, we’re not naïve enough to think that once someone goes on gardening leave that they’re not working for that other football club,” he told the Rest is Football podcast.

The Premier League’s top scorer has predicted that the two clubs could meet in the middle.

“My guess is that a compromise will be had, they’ll pay a fee, how much that will be. I’m not quite sure, but he’s done a really good job at Newcastle,” he continued. “But when you think about what he knows in terms of player’s contracts, clauses in their contracts, who Newcastle might have to sell, who they want to buy. I mean, he’s taking all that info with him to another football club.

“So, yeah it’s a tough one, but it is what it is. If you do well at your job somebody’s going to come in and try and poach you and nick you. Man Utd want the best at their football club now and it seems that finance won’t be an object, so I think they’ll do a deal with Newcastle and he’ll leave. I mean they’re a huge football club and they’re going to go on to bigger and better things under this new ownership model that they’ve got.

“It’ll be sorted out one way or another, he’ll eventually leave and Manchester United will pay a fee and Newcastle will get someone in to do that job.”