Manchester United’s Greenwood, cleared of prices, to go away membership to keep away from being a ‘distraction’

Manchester United’s Mason Greenwood. File.

Manchester United’s Mason Greenwood. File.
| Photograph Credit score: Reuters

Manchester United ahead Mason Greenwood will go away Outdated Trafford, he and the Premier League membership mentioned on Monday, to keep away from being a “distraction” regardless of being cleared of allegations of assault and tried rape.

Greenwood, who was suspended by United in January 2022 when accusations towards him surfaced on social media, was charged with tried rape, controlling behaviour and assault final October.

He had been attributable to stand trial on Nov. 27, 2023, however all legal prices towards him had been dropped in February, with the Crown Prosecution Service saying it was attributable to “the withdrawal of key witnesses and new materials that got here to mild”.

United mentioned their investigation started as soon as prices had been dropped.

“Based mostly on the proof out there to us, now we have concluded that the fabric posted on-line didn’t present a full image and that Mason didn’t commit the offences in respect of which he was initially charged,” the membership mentioned in a press release.

Nevertheless it mentioned “all these concerned, together with Mason” recognised the difficulties with him recommencing his profession at Manchester United.

“It has subsequently been mutually agreed that it could be most applicable for him to take action away from Outdated Trafford, and we’ll now work with Mason to attain that final result,” it mentioned.

‘Greatest determination’

In a press release to British media, Greenwood mentioned he had “made errors”, including: “I didn’t do the issues I used to be accused of.

“As we speak’s determination has been a part of a collaborative course of between Manchester United, my household and me.

“One of the best determination for us all is for me to proceed my soccer profession away from Outdated Trafford, the place my presence is not going to be a distraction for the membership.”

Greenwood got here by means of United’s youth academy and made his first-team debut in 2019 aged 17. He was a key member of the aspect within the 2021-22 season, making 18 Premier League appearances earlier than being suspended.

“I thank the membership for his or her help since I joined aged seven. There’ll at all times be part of me which is United,” added Greenwood, who additionally performed as soon as for England in 2020.

“I intend to be a greater footballer, however most significantly an excellent father, a greater individual, and to make use of my skills in a optimistic method on and off the pitch.”

Minimising distractions

Final week, British media reported that United had been contemplating Greenwood’s return to the squad, following which a gaggle of followers staged a protest exterior Outdated Trafford forward of United’s season-opening win over Wolverhampton Wanderers.

In an open letter addressed to the membership’s followers, CEO Richard Arnold mentioned the membership had thought of a number of outcomes, one among which was Greenwood’s reintegration into the squad, earlier than coming to their determination.

“This case has provoked robust opinions, and it’s my duty to minimise any distraction to the unity we’re searching for inside the membership,” Arnold mentioned.

“Though now we have determined that Mason will search to rebuild his profession away from Manchester United, that doesn’t sign the top of this matter.

“The membership will proceed to supply its help each to the alleged sufferer and Mason to assist them rebuild and transfer ahead positively with their lives.”

Home violence charity Girls’s Assist mentioned United’s determination to half methods with Greenwood might be a “aid for a lot of survivors of home and sexual abuse”.

“… the best way that alleged home abuse instances are handled in golf equipment has a big impact on public understanding about what’s accepted and tolerated in society,” a spokeswoman for the charity added.

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