Sir Jim Ratcliffe looking to strike gold as Man Utd make official approach for key backroom hire

Sir Jim Ratcliffe, Jason Wilcox Man Utd

Sir Jim Ratcliffe is hoping to hire Southampton's Jason Wilcox

Manchester United have reportedly made an official approach to hire Southampton director of football Jason Wilcox as Sir Jim Ratcliffe looks to finalise his backroom team for next season.

Ratcliffe took charge of football operations after becoming a minority owner of the Premier League side through his company INEOS and is determined to put his own stamp on the club.

That starts with creating a team behind the scenes who will improve the structure of the club and the playing side.

Current Newcastle sporting director Dan Ashworth, who has been placed on garden leave, remains under negotiations to join the club and now talks are underway to bring in Wilcox as well.

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The 53-year-old former Blackburn winger joined Championship side Southampton as director of football from Manchester City last summer, having worked up to the role of academy director during 11 years at the reigning Premier League champions.

And Wilcox is now subject of an official approach from United, although compensation terms are thought to be a sticking point.

The Red Devils have said to have offered compensation commensurate to a year’s salary, but Southampton want a bigger package than that.

United want Wilcox in place for the summer and are hoping for an amicable outcome, with things taking a turn of Monday evening.

Wilcox steps down from Saints role

A report emerged during Southampton’s late defeat at Ipswich on Monday evening that Wilcox has resigned, which would mean serving a 12-month notice period before he could take up a new role.

Wilcox is understood to have a good relationship with incoming United chief executive Omar Berrada from their time working together at The Etihad.

United, meanwhile, are back in action on Thursday night when they head to Chelsa in the Premier League.

Erik ten Hag will be looking for a vastly improved display from his side after they grabbed a fortunate draw at Brentford on Saturday evening, having been completely outplayed by Thomas Frank’s men.

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