Manchester United joined the European Super League on Sunday night, but fans’ overwhelming disapproval forced them to withdraw just two days later. And now, United co-chairman Joel Glazer has apologized for Super League in an open letter to the club’s supporters.
The Glazers, the American owners of Manchester United, have come under much criticism for affiliating with the Super League proposal. Discontent over their money-minded decision-making increased tenfold as fans accused them of prioritizing a payout over the club’s core values.
Neville Speaks Up
Indeed, not just fans but United legend Gary Neville also lashed out at the Glazers.
After the central role that United played in the Super League, Neville labelled the Glazer family “scavengers” for participating. He even said that they should be “booted out” from the club.
Neville, who spent his entire playing career as a Manchester United right-back, was still around when the Glazers took over in 2005.
And he said: “I feel slightly complicit, I’ve stayed pretty quiet in terms of the Glazers over the years.”
“I’ve stayed quiet on the basis that it’s still Manchester United, you can still watch the lads play, I can be happy and sad, I can still watch football in this country, they take dividends out, I can live with that slightly, but what I can’t live with is attacking every single football fan in this country,” he went on to say.
“They have stepped over the mark. They are scavengers and need booting out of this football club and booting out of this country,” he said, earnestly. “We have got to come together.”
Besides this, the term “Glazers Out” began trending online after their decision to join Super League.
Moreover, Ed Woodward will step down from his role as United’s executive vice-chairman at the end of 2021. The news of his resignation arrived right after the news of United withdrawing from the breakaway league, on Tuesday night.
Woodward took up his position in 2013 after an internal promotion. He has been a close ally to the Glazers during his time at United.
In fact, Joel Glazer and Woodward have been the driving forces behind United’s move to the European Super League.
Joel Glazer Has Apologized for Super League
After Woodward’s resignation, fans expected (even hoped) the Glazers to follow suit and cash out of United.
Instead, the Glazers seem keen to hold on to their ownership. Joel Glazer has contented himself with issuing a public apology.
He only got specific with the following words: “We continue to believe that European football needs to become more sustainable throughout the pyramid for the long-term. However, we fully accept that the Super League was not the right way to go about it.
“In seeking to create a more stable foundation for the game, we failed to show enough respect for its deep-rooted traditions –promotion, relegation, the pyramid – and for that we are sorry.”
Liverpool owner John W Henry’s apology struck us as a bit more personal and heartfelt but nonetheless- are apologies enough?
Both Liverpool and Manchester United are owned by American giants. So are many other clubs participating in the Super League. On the other hand, German clubs (and others), who’ve outright declined to join the league, are almost all fan-owned.
Will American owners with seemingly no emotional stakes invested in their ownership take the right decisions for our favorite clubs?