Woodward faces crucial call, as Man Utd look to fill key background role

Date published: Monday 26th October 2020 2:55

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Manchester United are reportedly looking to appoint a data scientist in the coming weeks, a role the Red Devils feel is crucial to their off-field development.

Much of the recent talk about a restructuring at Old Trafford has centred around a director of football. Indeed, reports have suggested that United have found their ideal candidate for that role.

However, according to The Athletic, United also feel a data scientist can help them progress off the pitch.

Liverpool have employed well-respected physicist Dr Ian Graham in that role, which involves assessing several performance indicators in order to improve the team.

More specifically, a data scientist can help a club’s medical department, as well as the team’s recruitment.

What’s more, with Liverpool’s model of background appointments working to fantastic effect, United reportedly want to follow suit.

The Red Devils have identified several candidates they feel can exercise the role and help the club progress.

However, the decision ultimately lies with executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward and owner Joel Glazer.

Ed Woodward

In any case, the Old Trafford club expect to appoint their new data scientist by the end of November.

United had earmarked filling the role as a priority task before the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The Covid-19 crisis forced club chiefs to temporarily shelve those plans, which are now underway again.

The aim is to reel in Liverpool, who have pulled clear of their arch-rivals in recent seasons.

Indeed, at the same time, United have gone in reverse, expelling three managers and facing continued criticism for their recruitment.

Man Utd still keen on Dortmund duo

Meanwhile, United reportedly still hold a serious interest in Erling Haaland and Jadon Sancho.

Woodward tried to bring Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho to Old Trafford in the recent transfer window.

However, like his pursuit of Haaland, the negotiations failed. Although, reports now claim that United’s ‘Project No. 7’ plans – codenamed this summer – are still intact.

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