Sir Jim Ratcliffe is already having big Man Utd impact after Luton win | Football | Sport

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Ratcliffe’s deal to buy 25 per cent of United for around £1billion was approved by the FA and the Premier League last week. His INEOS Group, led by director of sport Sir Dave Brailsford, will take total control of the club’s footballing operations.

They have already appointed Omar Berrada from Manchester City to become their new chief executive in the summer. Ratcliffe is now looking to make the highly-regarded Dan Ashworth the club’s sporting director if they can agree a deal with Newcastle. The Magpies want £10million in compensation to let him leave.

Ashworth has agreed to join and United are keen to poach Jason Wilcox, the director of football at Southampton who used to work for the City Football Group, to be part of his team. And Ten Hag insists the direction of Ratcliffe and INEOS is already having positive consequences.

He told Sky Sports after the 2-1 victory over Luton, Ten Hag explained: “I have very good contact, I know what’s going on. For Man United, it’s very good that we build a strong organisation. They are highly ambitious.

“Good people are always welcome because it’s team work at the end of the day. We need good people in, then the right strategies. You see with INEOS coming in, they’re spreading high ambition.

“We are in a project and they can help us, they can support us to accelerate it.” Rasmus Hojlund’s early brace secured the three points for United at Luton. It is a win that moves them within three points of Tottenham in fifth. Fourth-placed Aston Villa are five ahead of the Red Devils.

United legend Gary Neville told Sky Sports of the ongoing changes at Old Trafford: “When you think for 10 years, every United manager has operated without a CEO who has been at a football club before and without a sporting director, without a known head of recruitment, it’s madness. Forget negligence, it’s just madness.

“The idea that Jim Ratcliffe has come in and appointed a CEO that has been at a football club before and a football director, it’s staggering it hasn’t happened before. It’s unbelievable. It’s not anything special – putting good people into one of the best clubs in the world is a sensible thing to do.

“That’s why it feels there’s a new energy about the place. The turn in United’s fortunes has coincided at the point Ratcliffe came in. I think it’s a bit of a coincidence but it has been an about turn. What Ratcliffe has done is come in and say, ‘I’m looking at every single one of you lot. You’re all playing for your futures.’

“What the Glazers have done is literally just show blind loyalty to people who have been really good to them over a long period of time at the club. Ed Woodward was at the club for 10 to 12 years before he became CEO. They were loyal to him.

“It’s a bit like they were playing Football Manager, looking at the best players in the world – [Angel] Di Maria, [Radamel] Falcao, [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic – without having serious people operating the club which other clubs have.

“I do believe the mood has changed. What the fans wanted was some interference with the complete and utter tosh we’ve seen for 10 years. What’s happened is, the boardroom has been disrupted and there’s a completely new energy with decisions being made.

“How long have I been asking for a CEO that loves football, a sporting director, a sporting department? I can shut up about it now because they’ve got a department that has come in!”

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