Ed Woodward: Manchester United fans attack Old Trafford chief's home with flares

Woodward and his family understood to have been away at time of incident

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
Wednesday 29 January 2020 09:00
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Manchester United fans attack Ed Woodward's home

The home of Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward was attacked by a group of fans on Tuesday night.

In a sinister escalation of the unrest witnessed in the stands at United games recently, supporters angry at Woodward’s directorship targeted his family residence in Cheshire.

Neither Woodward, his wife or his young daughters are understood to have been at home at the time of the incident. Cheshire Police are investigating.

United released a strongly-worded statement condemning those involved and promised to hand out life bans to anyone found guilty of a criminal offence.

“Manchester United Football Club have tonight been made aware of the incident outside the home of one of our employees,” the statement read.

“We know that the football world will unite behind us as we work with police to identify the perpetrators of this unwarranted attack.

“Anybody found guilty of a criminal offence, or found to be trespassing on this property, will be banned for life by the club and may face prosecution.

“Fans expressing opinion is one thing, criminal damage and intent to endanger life is another. There is simply no excuse for this.”

A statement from Cheshire Police read: "At around 10.45pm on Tuesday 28 January, Cheshire police were notified of an incident of criminal damage that had taken place earlier this evening with a large group targeting a property in the Nether Peover area.

"Thankfully no-one was harmed, and officers will liaise with security officials over the coming days to establish the full circumstances surrounding this incident and identify those involved."

Images of the incident first emerged on social media on Tuesday night showing flares being fired into Woodward's gated property.

The posts were captioned with references to anti-Woodward chants that have recently been heard at United games.

Those involved in the incident are also understood to have daubed graffiti on the front of the property.

It is not the first example of United fans targeting the homes of those associated with the club.

Wayne Rooney was confronted outside his Cheshire residence in 2010 while engaged in a contract stand-off with former manager Sir Alex Ferguson.

Rio Ferdinand had faced similar treatment five years earlier while negotiating new terms at Old Trafford, admitting in his autobiography that he feared for his safety.

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