top of page

Noisy Neighbours Silenced as Berrada Joins United

Secrecy pays for the Red Devils as Manchester City lose their COO

In the midst of ownership changes at Old Trafford, Manchester United have ambushed Man City and lured Omar Berrada, their Chief Operating Officer, over to the red side of town.


This is a quick and promising start to Ineos’ journey as 25 per cent owner of the Red Devils, poaching one of the most highly regarded figures in world football. As they submitted their bids to shareholders earlier in 2023, they pledged to the club’s fans that their priority would be to make United “the number one club in the world once again” and so far, they are living up to their promise.


What surprises and should excite United fans is the professionalism with which the deal was completed. All too often do leaks and reports make the world privy to the club’s strategy, which has in the past stunted and even blocked transfers from going through. Ineos’ director of sport, Sir David Brailsford, understood that secrecy was of paramount importance, perhaps trying to avoid a repeat of previous transfer farces such as Jadon Sancho and Harry Maguire, who ultimately cost more because United’s position was weakened by leaked information. Brailsford was crucial to the deal, as he initiated relations by first reaching out to Berrada, before conferring with shareholders and deciding that he was the perfect candidate for the role. Such was the efficiency of his work that the deal even came as a shock to Man City, many of whose staff only found out about the news when The Athletic broke the story on Saturday. Regardless of whether or not the Frenchman proves to be a success, the way in which Manchester United handled themselves in negotiations and communication should please the fans.


Many football fans are wondering why Berrada would leave the most in-form club in world football for their arch-rivals, especially at the beginning of their structural overhaul. It is important to note that United have offered Berrada a promotion, as he has become their chief executive, moving up from his chief operating officer role at City. Critics of the deal are suggesting less innocent motivations, arguing that Berrada is jumping ship in the face of the 115 charges aimed at Man City. A section of United’s fanbase is concerned that Berrada will bring this trouble with him, but he has never been implied in any of the accusations levelled against the Blues. His name wasn’t mentioned in any of the leaked emails to Der Spiegel in 2018, and he wasn’t called to witness at the Court of Arbitration of Sport, so fans needn’t fret much in this regard.


So, what’s his secret? Berrada is known to be very wary of overspending on players, something which Manchester United are more guilty of than anyone else. Annually featuring amongst the world’s top spenders, they are yet to see their purchases be vindicated in the post-Ferguson era, so there is certainly room for improvement in that regard. Another important point for Berrada is good organisation of the club internally, suggesting that results on the pitch will follow. With the power entrusted to him at his new club, he has the chance to orchestrate operations as he sees fit, making this a seemingly perfect appointment from United, from head to toe.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

14 views0 comments


bottom of page