What Man Utd really think behind the scenes about Richard Arnold’s stunning chat with fans

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Manchester United are relaxed and supportive of Richard Arnold’s decision to speak with fans, according to reports. A protest was recently arranged to be outside of the 51-year-old’s home. But, rather than hide away, the Red Devils supremo decided to front up and tackle the issue head on.

It was quite a chat Arnold had with supporters, buying them pints at a pub to try and quash some of the doom and gloom mood engulfing the club.

During the conversation, the United supremo appeared to aim a dig at Ed Woodward by criticising the club’s spending in recent years.

He also opened up on the club’s pursuit of Frenkie de Jong and insisted the Glazers wouldn’t be going anywhere, despite a clamour for them to depart.

Publicly, United have backed Arnold.

They said: “Richard heard that a group of fans had gathered in a pub near his house.

“He went to meet them, bought them all a drink, listened to their views, and explained what the club is doing to deliver success on the pitch, improve the stadium, and strengthen engagement with fans.”

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And The Athletic say that, behind the scenes, United are ‘relaxed and supportive’ of Arnold’s decision.

As the chief executive of one of the biggest football clubs and businesses in the world, it was a surprising sight to see the 51-year-old talk so openly.

But given how the Glazers and Woodward have conducted themselves, it’s also a welcome one.

The Glazers rarely engage with fans and have only made progress on that front in the wake of their failed European Super League plot.

Woodward was also a distant figure, with supporters blaming him for the current state of the team after his failed reign.

Regarding Woodward, the publication adds that Arnold didn’t necessarily mean to take a dig at his predecessor.


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It’s claimed the 51-year-old’s comments ‘weren’t meant as a criticism’ while also underlining Woodward himself recognised the club’s structure needed to change.

It’ll be interesting to see what the Glazers make of things, too.

But Arnold has certainly enhanced his popularity after choosing to show his human side, especially in an industry that rarely allows that to happen.

During the chat with fans, Arnold admitted that United had spent badly in recent years.

“We spent a billion pounds on players. We have spent more than anyone in Europe,” he said.

“I’m not thrilled where we are. It doesn’t sit easy with me and I worry how we get this sorted for the future.

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“What’s happened is we have [expletive] burned through cash. You can’t go to our training ground and say ‘show me where the £1billion is’ because we haven’t spent money well historically.

“I’m not here to defend (chairman) Joel (Glazer). He must speak for himself.

“But you have taken the time to come here and make your views known – and I respect that.

“We’ve blown through an enormous amount of money. For this summer, the money the manager and the director of football (John Murtough) wants is there.

“For the future, for investing in a new stadium and a latest-and-greatest training ground we’ve got to do something. We’ve got to get investors in. I need that to do what I want for the club. I’ve got to have more cash now because no club in the world has the money to build a new stadium.

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“You either borrow it or invest it. The money has got to come from somewhere. You might not like our current owners – I can’t help that.

“But if you want someone else to come in they will see that the fans love the team and that is positive. But last year was a [expletive] nightmare. There was hate at every game.”

And, on De Jong, he added: “Money is not a consideration on who we want.

“The manager wants him (Frenkie De Jong) and they have actually done the work. He’s a great player.

“Is it 100 or 200? I don’t know. Get who you [expletive] want. Do you want me buying the players? Does that not ring a bell?”

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