Man Utd appoint Omar Berrada from rivals Man City as their new chief executive; Berrada succeeds Richard Arnold following his exit as CEO at the end of last year; Berrada has played a key part in City’s recent on and off-the-field success and has also worked at Barcelona
Explained: Why Omar Berrada’s appointment as CEO is a ‘huge coup’ for Manchester United
Manchester United have appointed Omar Berrada from rivals Manchester City as their new chief executive.
United have been searching for a new CEO since the departure of Richard Arnold and have found his successor in Berrada, who has played a key part in City’s recent on and off-the-field success.
Sky Sports News understands the appointment was made by Sir Jim Ratcliffe in consultation with Joel and Avram Glazer but that INEOS were the driving force behind the move.
The deal has been done quickly so that Berrada can be in place as soon as possible after Ratcliffe’s deal to buy 25 per cent of Man Utd has been completed.
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United see Berrada as the ideal choice of CEO because of his fantastic record running both the football and commercial side of a club – having enjoyed huge success at City and Barcelona.
He brokered deals that saw City sign the likes of Erling Haaland and Jack Grealish, as well as generate record revenue from the City Academy.
One source has told Sky Sports News, once Berrada knew of United’s interest and the impressive way he was sold the club, it was impossible to say no.
A United statement said: “The club is determined to put football and performance on the pitch back at the heart of everything we do. Omar’s appointment represents the first step on this journey.
“As one of the most experienced football executives at the top of European football, Omar brings a wealth of football and commercial expertise, with a proven record of successful leadership and a passion to help lead change across the club.
“It is our stated ambition to re-establish Manchester United as a title-winning club. We are pleased that Omar will be joining us to help achieve that goal, so that, once again, United fans can see, in the words of Sir Matt Busby, the red flag flying high at the summit of English, European and world football.”
A Manchester City statement confirming Berrada’s departure read: “The club understands his decision to look for a new challenge and he leaves with our thanks and best wishes.”
A Manchester City source has told Sky Sports News while the club is sad to see Berrada leave, they remain confident City’s management structure is “the best in the world” and that will remain the case.
The source added the club is ahead of Manchester United “on every metric” and Berrada going to United is seen as a compliment.
Patrick Stewart has worked as United’s interim chief executive since Arnold’s exit at the end of the year and will remain in place until Berrada starts.
Image: Berrada spent almost eight years working for Barcelona
Who is Omar Berrada?
Berrada describes himself on LinkedIn as having 20 years of senior-level experience in football and someone “with expertise in the management of club business and football operations, including player transactions, sponsorship and media rights.”
Having lived in six different countries, Berrada says he is fluent in four languages. His LinkedIn profile says he is “responsible for managing and optimising group football operations for almost 100 teams across 11 clubs on five continents.”
He has also represented Manchester City and the Group in multiple governing roles including with the European Clubs Association and the FA Women’s Super League Board.
He was the chief football operations officer at City Football Group overseeing talent management, performance services and football intelligence.
Prior to the role, which he has held since September 2016, Berrada had worked as commercial director for City Football Marketing before.
He joined City from Barcelona, having worked for the Spanish club for almost eight years. Berrada held the positions of senior media business development manager and the head of sponsorship during a very successful era for the club.
Berrada has over 18 years of senior-level experience in the sports industry and five years in the telecommunications sector.