Sir Jim Ratcliffe faces Mason Greenwood backlash as Man Utd do U-turn | Football | Sport

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Sir Jim Ratcliffe is facing his first internal problem at Manchester United after offering Mason Greenwood hope he can resurrect his career at the club. The forward is out on loan at Getafe after charges, which he denied, of attempted rape, assault and coercive behaviour against him were dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service last year.

After the charges were discontinued, United’s former chief executive Richard Arnold had announced to staff an intention to reintegrate Greenwood back into the team. But after significant opposition, the Red Devils were forced to scrap that idea.

A statement read: “Reintegration was one of the outcomes we considered and planned for. That said, as Mason publicly acknowledges today, he has made mistakes which he is taking responsibility for. All those involved, including Mason, recognise the difficulties with him recommencing his career at Manchester United.

“It has therefore been mutually agreed that it would be most appropriate for him to do so away from Old Trafford, and we will now work with Mason to achieve that outcome.” Greenwood has since joined Getafe on loan and done well. They are 10th in La Liga and he has provided seven goals and five assists in 25 games.

That return has come despite the Bradford-born 22-year-old’s game time coming in three different positions – right wing, left wing and centre-forward. Barcelona and Atletico Madrid are both showing interest in signing the United academy graduate permanently this coming summer.

But Ratcliffe has suggested he will explore the possibility of a U-turn to give Greenwood a second chance in Manchester. The Daily Mirror say the 71-year-old billionaire is dumbfounded that United, whose footballing operation he now controls, are paying the bulk of his £75,000-a-week wages while he’s out on loan.

He is also unimpressed at the idea of losing a player who was once tipped for great things when he first emerged from the academy at Old Trafford. As such, the INEOS chief is looking at whether Greenwood can be reintegrated. The Mirror add that those within the club are shocked by Ratcliffe’s stance and say that it has not gone down well in certain quarters.

But Ratcliffe may not be as reactive to the feelings of those within United as Arnold was. Certainly Greenwood will not go out on loan again. His contract expires next summer, although the Red Devils have an option to extend the agreement by an extra 12 months.

Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest man, said last week of the dilemma over Greenwood: “It’s a fresh decision. I can talk about the principle. I am not going to talk about Mason. I am familiar with it. The principle is the important one. We will have other issues going forwards.

“You are dealing with young people who have not always been brought up in the best circumstances, who have a lot of money and they don’t always have the guidance they should have. What we need to do when we have issues like that is understand real effects, not the hype.

“Then we need to make a fair decision in the light of the club’s values. That’s what we need to do and that’s how we will deal with it.” Greenwood has not played for United since January 22, 2022 – a win over West Ham. He has made 129 appearances, scoring 35 goals and adding 12 assists, for the Premier League giants.

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