Goodison Park

Next Game

Everton v Man Utd

Sunday, 20 April 2014, 16:10

Barclays Prem

Allianz Arena

Last Game

Bay Munich 3 - 1 Man Utd

Wednesday, 09 April 2014, 19:45

Champions League Quarter Final

Woodward favours United 'B' side

Ed Woodward has claimed the use of a 'B' team could be the answer to a lack of competitive football for younger Manchester United players.

Last Updated: 04/12/13 at 19:38 Post Comment    Bet with SkyBet  Man Utd Specials. Click here to bet.

Ed Woodward: Has backed 'B' team idea

Ed Woodward: Has backed 'B' team idea

For some years now, United and many of their fellow Premier League big-hitters have concluded the present set-up does not create a competitive environment for players outside the first team.

Even a change from the old reserve sides to the present Under-21 set-up, with the potential for utilising over-age players, has done little to address the problem.

And Woodward thinks the Spanish system, where Real Madrid and Barcelona operate second teams below La Liga level, is an idea worth looking at.

"If we could have a 'B' team playing it would solve a lot of the issues," Woodward told fanzine United We Stand.

"The reserves do deliver some of the objectives, the system just isn't as good as it could be.

"Barcelona and Real Madrid have a competitive edge with their system. Ajax have got it. A team in the division below went bust a year ago. Ajax stepped in and now they are developing their players that way.

"You can look at different models and what Spurs have done with Swindon. You can look at rotating players in the first team.

"There is no clear and obvious answer. If you buy a top 18 year old, they could go straight in with the first team. Or they could go into the squad at number 25 or 26."

The clear issues are the traditional loyalties within the English football system and how fans of a club like Bury, for instance, would take to being reduced to the status of a feeder club.

It is certainly hard to see such a structure being implemented in England, even if Woodward's observations are shared by others at the top end of the game.

At the moment, though, he has enough on his plate at United, given they went into Wednesday's fixture with Everton in an unaccustomed eighth position.

Some feel the Red Devils may even struggle to qualify for next season's Champions League.

However, Woodward remains relaxed about that prospect, insisting United were strong enough to ride out such short-term financial strife.

"If you fight hard and just fail, people will still watch you on television, still turn up and buy shirts," he said.

"There's still a lot of affinity with the club and interest. The reality is that you can't always win.

"Take Liverpool. They still sell an incredible number of shirts and have the second biggest shirt deal in the Premier League.

"They have one of the biggest technical partner deals - and they haven't won the league since 1990. And you can put the last bit underlined and in capitals.

"If we have a bad year we have the financial strength to change the team. We have so much deeper financial strength that instead of selling three players and buying three, we can do five."

And that financial strength also means the naming rights to Old Trafford will never be sold.

"It's important that Old Trafford is Old Trafford," he said. "The Glazers are actually very traditional in their views.

"People have asked us the question, asked us if we would consider (selling the naming rights). We won't."

Bet with SkyBet  Man Utd Specials. Click here to bet.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Related News

Sky Bet

    • Retrieving latest Sky Bet odds

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Mike_Christie
Please Stop Telling Us What To Think

H

ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

TheWhiz
Wenger hails important win

I

s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

redbornandbred
De Gea's Europa League target

Footer 365

Contract news: Tim Howard has been handed an extension to his Everton contract

Tim Howard will be staying with Everton until at least 2018 after agreeing a two-year extension to his contract.

Neymar and Jordi Alba will miss the bulk of the remainder of the season

Barcelona forward Neymar has been ruled out for up to a month due to a left foot injury.

Transfer news: Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino warns off Luke Shaw suitors

Mauricio Pochettino says in-demand defender Luke Shaw will be staying at Southampton.

Mail Box

Mignolet Is The Reason For Liverpool Flying

Mignolet's bad kicking is the reason for Liverpool's success, whilst one man keep notes on F365 mails. Plus England excitement, Arteta and a bad Walsall experience...

City: Bottle Jobs, A Laughing Stock...

There are some harsh words for Manchester City and Manuel Pellegrini in the Mailbox this morning, as well as some rather nicer ones for Tony Pulis and his magic hat...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property