Man United: Journalist drops update on potential replacement for Ed Woodward

Former Manchester United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar at an awards ceremony

Journalist Nicolo Schira has confirmed that former Manchester United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar is in the mix to replace Ed Woodward as the club's executive vice-chairman.

What did Schira say?

Speculation has been rife about who could take over from Woodward following his recent resignation. On Wednesday evening, Schira took to Twitter to provide an update on a potential candidate.

He wrote: "Ajax General Manager and former Man United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar could replace Ed Woodward at Manchester United."

Will Arsenal beat Man United to Edwin van der Sar? Hear more on The Football Terrace...

When will the role become available?

Woodward took up his current position at United back in 2012, and has overseen some major transfers during his tenure, including playing his part in bringing Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes to Old Trafford.

However, following the collapse of the European Super League on Tuesday evening, it was confirmed that his time at the club is coming to an end.

Read More - European Super League: Everything you need to know about breakaway league

In a statement released on United's official website, Woodward announced that he was stepping down from his role at the end of 2021, with the 49-year-old claiming that he had left the club "well positioned for the future."

Would van der Sar be a popular choice?

More popular than Woodward, it would seem.

In his six-year spell with the Red Devils as a player, van der Sar was a formidable presence in goal for Sir Alex Ferguson's men. The Dutchman won four Premier League titles, and his most iconic moment came in the Champions League final in 2008 when he saved a Nicola Anelka penalty to hand United their third European Cup.

These achievements made him popular as a player, and if he is willing to ruffle a few feathers in the boardroom, that is likely to go down well with the club's supporters.

Would he want the United job?

Less than 18 months ago, van der Sar signed a new four-year deal to remain in his CEO role at Ajax. This seemed to put to bed rumours of him joining United as a director of football.

At the time, it seemed like a smart move given that earlier in the year Ajax had reached a Champions League semi-final, and came perilously close to making the final only to encounter Lucas Moura's iconic last-minute comeback. 

Perhaps van der Sar sensed an opportunity for the club to take that next step and wanted to be involved in their journey.

Unfortunately for Ajax, they have failed to make it beyond the group stage in their last two Champions League campaigns, and they were recently knocked out of the Europa League quarter-finals by Roma.

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How many league titles have Manchester United won?

Van der Sar may now feel that their moment for European glory has passed, and could decide that he has a better chance of rising to the top with United, who seem to be heading in the right direction as they are into the semi-finals of the Europa League and look set to finish as runners-up in the Premier League this year.

With this in mind, taking over at the start of 2022 in the hope of continuing United's upward trajectory could be perfect timing for van der Sar.

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