Ed Woodward
Ed Woodward has confirmed that changes to Manchester United's academy system will be made clear soon Getty Images

Ed Woodward has revealed that Manchester United are in the process of restructuring their academy after the completion of a comprehensive review that began in the summer of 2015.

The club's executive vice-chairman was speaking during a conference call following the latest quarterly financial results that revealed record revenue of £257m ($370m) in the six months to December 2015.

United's academy setup was previously overseen for almost a decade by former striker Brian McClair, but he eventually left Old Trafford in May 2015 in order to take up a new post as performance director for the Scottish Football Association (SFA). He was not replaced and that departure appeared to instigate something of an organisational rethink, the results of which are likely to become clear later this week.

"We took the departure of Brian McClair last summer as the chance to do a root and branch review of the academy," Woodward was quoted as saying by The Mirror. "That is now complete and changes are under way, and announcements will follow in the coming days.

"I think in terms of the future, our key competitive advantages are still very strong, and the two I would call out are an unmatched record of player development, compared to any other team, particularly in England, and secondly the runway of first-team opportunities we deliver to those players coming through, again very different to some of our competitors."

Woodward did not receive any questions from investors regarding United's rather precarious managerial situation after rumours that Jose Mourinho could be in line to replace Louis van Gaal at the end of the season amid fears of a potential reign of dominance from Manchester City under Pep Guardiola.


He did, however, hint that the club will strengthen their squad during the summer transfer window and identified China as a "useful market" if they need to sell players. Football in the world's most populous country has attracted a far higher-profile over recent months, with Super League (CSL) teams spending millions to entice established European-based players such as Ramires, Jackson Martinez and Alex Teixeira to East Asia. More high-profile and expensive signings are expected to follow before the Chinese window closes for business on 26 February.