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Manchester United Move For Ex-Liverpool Sporting Director Michael Edwards But Touted As "Unlikely"

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Manchester United Move For Ex-Liverpool Sporting Director Michael Edwards But Touted As "Unlikely"

Manchester United are interested in ex-Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards to bolster Erik ten Hag and John Murtough's team at Old Trafford, but a move has been touted as "unlikely".

As per the reliable Sami Mokbel and Adrian Kajumba of Mail Sport, Manchester United are one of the clubs interested in ex-Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards, as they look to strengthen their recruitment operations.

It is stated that United are in the midst of revamping their recruitment set-up, and work on those lines is being led by football director John Murtough.

Edwards is mentioned as someone of interest to the hierarchy at United as they look to overhaul their transfer team. However, the report also states that it isn't clear yet as to whether he'll be open to joining United given his previous ties to Liverpool.

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Michael Edwards at Liverpool (Alamy)
Michael Edwards at Liverpool (Alamy)

The report adds that while an addition to United's recruitment team is not imminent, they are said to be constantly surveying the footballing landscape to drive improvements.

In addition to Michael Edwards, Brentford’s director of recruitment Lee Dykes and Middlesbrough’s head of football Kieron Scott are also said to have admirers at the club.

While the prospect of United being interested in Edwards is undoubtedly an encouraging development, irrespective of whether he ends up joining them, a very pertinent question would be to wonder how a figure like him would co-exist with the footballing hierarchy already in place at the club.

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Senior scouts Jim Lawlor and Marcel Bout along with director of negotiations Matt Judge have all left their roles at the club of late. The scouting department is subsequently said to be led by head of scouting Steve Brown, as reported by Paul Hirst of Times Sport.

Brown is said to report to football director John Murtough and make informed decisions on targets in consultation with the recruitment department and the manager in place.

James Ducker of Telegraph Sport further added that Brown doesn't give an opinion on players but seeks to ensure there's a robust process in place and that targets are watched in an array of contexts and by multiple eyeballs.

According to Rob Dawson of ESPN, Steve Brown would also have a veto on prospective targets along with John Murtough and Erik ten Hag.

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United also appointed Andy O'Boyle as deputy football director. He is said to have spent the last five years as Head of Elite Performance for the Premier League - and being responsible for advising clubs on an array of topics like talent identification and recruitment, performance analysis, sports science and medicine, psychology and loan management.

James Ducker also mentioned that Andy's appointment would free up around two-thirds of Murtough’s week. It would remove much of the day-to-day bureaucracy and enable Murtough to narrow his focus on the first team and the issue of recruitment. 

With these changes made specifically keeping this issue in mind, it would be interesting to see how another high-profile appointment in the recruitment department, if there is one at all, would fit within United's footballing hierarchy while ensuring every person is content with the roles they're playing.

In this context, Mark Ogden of ESPN reports that a move to Old Trafford for Edwards is unlikely, with John Murtough now heading all of the club's football operations.

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However, even if United manage to find a way to work around things internally, they'd face competition from a top six rival in any potential pursuit of Michael Edwards.

Michael Edwards has a great reputation in the game. (Alamy)
Michael Edwards has a great reputation in the game. (Alamy)

The aforementioned report by Mail Sport states that Chelsea are another club who hold an interest in Edwards, a view also presented earlier by Matt Law of Telegraph Sport - stating that the club are likely to make an effort to find out about Edward's plans, as they look to replace the departing Marina Granovskaia.

Mokbel and Kajumba further state in their report that Chelsea have already explored the possibility of appointing him to a senior recruitment position. However, Edwards was said to be hesitant about making such a swift return to the game given his initial intention was to take a break.

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Also, Mark Ogden, in the report quoted above, mentioned that Michael Edwards has been identified as the leading candidate to become sporting director at Stamford Bridge.

As is clear, a lot of things would need to fall in place and go right for any possibility of Michael Edwards being a part of the footballing structure at Old Trafford.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester United, Manchester United Transfer News & Rumours, Transfers, Liverpool, Chelsea, Football, Erik Ten Hag, Premier League

Devesh Arora
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