Manchester United to appoint Matt Johnson as interim head of women’s football

Manchester United are expected to appoint Matt Johnson as the club’s new head of women’s football on an interim basis.

Johnson is set to take on the role for six months while United consider their longer-term model.

He will begin the role in May, with United confirming in February head of women’s football Polly Bancroft would be leaving at the end of the campaign to take up a position as a chief executive of League Two side Grimsby Town.

Johnson is currently operations director at the Manchester United Foundation, having spent five years as the performance director for the girls’ talent club

While Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS officially completed their purchase of a minority stake in United in February, and are now responsible for sporting operations, it is the leadership team in place at the club before INEOS’ arrival who were aware of Johnson’s suitability for the position.

United had appointed Bancroft, the former Brighton & Hove general manager, into a newly-created role as their head of women’s football in October 2022. She was tasked with overseeing the strategic direction, operations and performance of the women’s first team and academy.

Bancroft handles day-to-day decision-making, works closely with women’s first-team manager Marc Skinner and reports to Andy O’Boyle, United’s deputy football director, who works closely with John Murtough, responsible for all United’s football activity, including the women’s team. One of the club’s biggest tasks last year was negotiating Alessia Russo and Ona Battle’s renewals. Last summer, Russo joined Arsenal while Batlle returned to Barcelona.

Bancroft is not the only member of the women’s set-up to leave in the last 12 months. Skinner’s assistant Martin Ho departed last summer and took up the head coach position at Norwegian side SK Brann Kvinner on a two-year contract, guiding them to the group stages of the women’s Champions League.

United sit fifth in the Women’s Super League and return to action against Everton on Sunday.



Special report: The state of Manchester United’s women’s team

(Charlotte Tattersall – MUFC/Manchester United via Getty Images)

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