Newcastle United blow as candidate ‘rejects’ opportunity to replace Man Utd-bound Dan Ashworth

Lewis Oldham
Newcastle United Freedman
Crystal Palace's Dougie Freedman has been linked with Newcastle United.

Newcastle United’s ‘search for Dan Ashworth’s successor continues’ as they have reportedly been ‘rejected’ by Crystal Palace chief Dougie Freedman.

Freedman is a Crystal Palace legend as he has previously had stints with the Premier League club as a player and a manager.

The 49-year-old returned to the Premier League outfit in 2017 as he became their sporting director.

He has done a brilliant job in recent years as he has helped Palace secure a few gems, with Michael Olise, Eberechi Eze, Adam Wharton and Marc Guehi among the players who could soon be sold for a significant profit.

Freedman’s work with Palace has caught the attention of Newcastle United as they scour the market for a new sporting director with Ashworth eyeing a move to Man Utd.

Former Brighton chief Ashworth has only been with Newcastle since 2022 but he made it clear earlier this year that he wants to leave for Man Utd.

New Man Utd co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe is overhauling their recruitment model and wants Ashworth to be their sporting director, whilst chief executive Omar Berrada and technical director Jason Wilcox have also been recruited.

Ashworth conflict

Ashworth has been placed on gardening leave by Newcastle after his Man Utd preference became clear and the two clubs have been in talks over a compensation package.

Newcastle and Man Utd remain far apart in discussions and it has emerged that they are going to arbitration so the battle for Ashworth can conclude.

According to reports, Ashworth is planning to ‘force’ through a move to Man Utd by arguing ‘he was sacked’ by Newcastle ‘rather than resigning’. 

In the meantime, Newcastle have been stepping up efforts to replace Ashworth, with a ‘landmark offer’ being made to ‘perfect’ candidate Freedman.

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According to a report from Football Insider, Newcastle have missed out on Freedman as the Crystal Palace chief has ‘rejected’ a move to St James’ Park.

‘Football Insider revealed last week (13 May) that official news on the 49-year-old joining Newcastle would come soon after the end of the 2023-24 campaign.

‘But Freedman, who impressed the Tyneside club with his work at Crystal Palace, has now chosen to remain at Selhurst Park.

‘The Scot was high on the shortlist at Newcastle due to his ability to buy and develop top young talent.

‘Freedman has also been linked with a potential move to Man United under the new Sir Jim Ratcliffe regime at Old Trafford.’

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