300 Man Utd jobs 'under threat' as Sir Jim Ratcliffe plans to make brutal first decision


Sir Jim Ratcliffe may cut up to 300 jobs at Manchester United in one of his first actions since purchasing a minority stake in the club, according to reports. It was confirmed on Sunday that Ratcliffe had reached an agreement with the Glazer family to buy 25 per cent of the club and take control of football matters at Old Trafford.

The news brought an overdue end to the months of speculation regarding a potential takeover at United, which had dominated the headlines for over a year. It seems as though Ratcliffe's first job will reportedly be to reduce the size of the workforce, with over 1,000 people employed by the Red Devils as things stand.

Ratcliffe is expected to ask an external auditor to assess United's structure with a view to a major streamlining exercise, according to The Guardian. This could put as many as 300 jobs at risk, with Ratcliffe said to be eager to reduce the current number of staff by around 30 per cent.

Staff at United are said to be aware that the club's new ownership structure could mean further changes regarding the number of employees and various departments. Senior managers have already been warned that expenditure will need to be kept to a minimum in order to boost the club's financial situation when it comes to recruiting new players.

Ratcliffe is set to inject around £237million into United upon his arrival at Old Trafford, but this will reportedly be for infrastructure and not to strengthen the playing squad. It means that money will need to be saved across other areas of the business to maximise the club's transfer budget for the end of the season and beyond.

United fans have delivered a mixed reaction to the news of Ratcliffe's minority investment, with many just wanting to see the Glazers leave given the club's steady decline over the years. The Manchester United Supporters' Trust issued a statement on Sunday evening, in which they said they 'remained sceptical' about the ownership situation with the Glazers still running the club.

Ratcliffe, however, has since insisted that he will be 'in it for the long-term' at United and while he knows that he is under great pressure to deliver for the club, any success will require time.

"I believe we can bring sporting success on the pitch to complement the undoubted commercial success that the club has enjoyed," said Ratcliffe in a statement of his own. "It will require time and patience alongside rigour and the highest level of professional management.

"You are ambitious for Manchester United and so are we. There are no guarantees in sport, and change can inevitably take time but we are in it for the long term and together we want to help take Manchester United back to where the club belongs, at the very top of English, European and world football. I take that responsibility very seriously."

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