Man Utd's Dan Ashworth move at risk over huge email blunder

  • Man Utd working to hire Dan Ashworth as sporting director
  • Red Devils yet to agree compensation fee with current employers Newcastle
  • A mistake from Ashworth could land United officials in hot water
Ashworth's next move is in jeopardy
Ashworth's next move is in jeopardy / Matthew Ashton - AMA/GettyImages

Manchester United's pursuit of director Dan Ashworth is in danger of falling apart after he accidentally revealed he had spoken to the Red Devils without Newcastle United's permission.

Ashworth was placed on gardening leave by Newcastle after confirming he wanted to join United, but the two clubs are yet to come anywhere close to an agreement over compensation. The Magpies are believed to be pushing for close to £20m to part ways with the former Brighton official.

With the case expected to head to a tribunal, the Daily Mail revealed that Ashworth may have inadvertently played into Newcastle's hands by confirming his premature talks with United.

Ashworth held talks with incoming United CEO Omar Berrada in February and later sent an email to the Red Devils chief to confirm he wanted to make the move to Old Trafford, but crucially, Ashworth also sent a copy of this message to his own Newcastle email address by accident.

That move revealed to Newcastle that Ashworth had spoken to United without being given approval to do so by his current employers.

Dan Ashworth
A huge mistake from Ashworth / Dan Mullan/GettyImages

Ashworth's message is also believed to have revealed details of the compensation agreement struck between Newcastle and Brighton in 2022, which could be a breach of confidentiality for both clubs involved.

According to The Times, United offered just £2.5m in compensation for Ashworth after learning of the previous payment between Newcastle and Brighton - well short of the figure Newcastle are demanding to release Ashworth from his contract.

Should no agreement be reached, Ashworth will serve the full period of gardening leave, which is due to run until October 2025.

Berrada could also land himself in hot water as he was still on gardening leave from Manchester City at the time of his contact with Ashworth. The Spaniard is not due to start work for United until July 13 and may have gone against the terms of his agreement.

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