Ed Woodward and Manchester United tell FSG about their biggest challenge in Liverpool – archyde

On a conference call with shareholders in 2018, Manchester United Vice Chairman Ed Woodward claimed the club doesn’t have to be successful on the pitch to make money.

The ongoing failure to land meaningful cutlery, losses made worse by the pandemic, wasting money on poorly judged new signings, and contract renewals culminating in the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer suggest the club is trying hard to see whether this statement is true water.

Since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, Manchester United have not won another Premier League or Champions League title and around 44 million wins as a player at Old Trafford have given him more time to fail. But it failed.

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Cristiano Ronaldo’s signing, coined as the final piece of the puzzle to bring Manchester United back to the summit, backfired and has been exposed for what it really was. a commercial power game.

“Game performance doesn’t really affect what we can do on the commercial side of the business,” he said during that 2018 conference call.

Well, Woodward may have believed that statement was true at the time, but move fast forward to 2021 and the landscape has changed.

According to recent research, United may still be the most watched Premier League club on social media in the world, but they are no longer the most marketable. And the longer it continues to slide into mediocrity, the more difficult it becomes to attract sponsors. Commercial partners want notoriety, yes, but they want that notoriety to be positive and associated with success. Manchester United looks a long way from being such a commercial offer right now.

Liverpool have taken on the reputation of being the most marketable Premier League team global. The Champions League success of 2019 and the Premier League triumph of 2020, not to mention the stability that comes with someone who is as charismatic and committed as Jürgen Klopp at the top Eigentümer Fenway Sports Group were able to increase sales and profits to a level that will close the gap to United in a financial year not affected by Covid.

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They made up ground with the kit deal with Nike, a deal structured in a way that Liverpool are hoping to raise annual totals close to the guaranteed £ 70million that Manchester United will receive from Adidas. Then there is the possibility that the front t-shirt sponsorship will be auctioned again in the next two years, with Standard Chartered’s current deal ends in 2023.

But while FSG has steadily increased sales since arriving at Anfield Road in 2010, it has really made headway thanks to its success on the field. It was a great blessing and one that sets them apart from the likes of United, whose repeated failures on the pitch resulted in the need to look at the transfer market and spend large amounts of money to give the semblance of success. They were the equivalent of a paper mache Ferrari.

The search for a new manager at Old Trafford begins to bring back the glory days and the club knows it has to delight commercial partners as well as fans.

The FSG has its critics in Liverpool. Some have invested too little in the team in crucial areas, others have accused that profit comes before success.

And while it must be argued that success has indeed been achieved, the FSG and Liverpool should view the mess Manchester United is creating as a model of what happens when the will to be the best and just rely on it Profits that are always good “just because” is exposed as a flawed approach.

The FSG sees Liverpool as a business because it is. It’s a £ 3 billion business that is the most precious part of their £ 7 billion empire. But they are also aware that it has a heartbeat and is emotionally charged, which became clear to them when they failed attempts to take part in the European Super League plot earlier this year.

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For all the mistakes and missteps, some of which should not be forgotten, they were good at getting the right people in the right places.

Michael Edwards arrived as relatively unknown a decade ago, but his talent was discovered and nurtured and became one of the key wheels in Liverpool’s recent success. The same skills were seen and trusted his successor, Julian Ward.

Klopp was also the right employee. After a long process that was based on the experience of the applicants and focused on which manager would be best suited to lead the project and how the club wanted to function, they ended up with the German as the perfect candidate. It wasn’t about satisfying sponsors or calming the pressure from fans, but using the mood to take the heat away from the owners, it was a call with a long-term strategy.

All of these were good things that made Liverpool a success and enabled the FSG to reap financial rewards. But looking at what Manchester United has become and where they are right now should serve as a warning about what happens when success is secondary and to ensure that the best people aren’t in the most important positions.

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United is currently way behind the curve. While Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool have all been strategizing on and off the field, United have tried to compete by simply telling people that they are Manchester United and are winning things.

That’s all well and good, but football has changed and they haven’t kept up. When Ferguson left there was a void that they still need to fill adequately. They have gone from looking for the fastest route to success to sentimental gossip and seen how they melted away from the top 4 conversations, now forced to look outside and catch up.

All of this should be a warning to the FSG of what will happen according to Klopp when that point occurs. It is often argued that Liverpool’s success is based on Klopp’s ability to work miracles. The FSG have managed to enable Liverpool to compete on and off the field, but their biggest challenge is how they maintain this across different cycles. You should use Manchester United as a blueprint not to run a football club. You cannot afford this fate.



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