Nicky Butt leaves Man Utd, wants to pursue 'a new professional challenge'

·2-min read
Manchester United logo
Manchester United logo

Manchester [UK], March 25 (ANI): Manchester United has announced that Nicky Butt is stepping down from the post of head of first-team development at the club to pursue "a new professional challenge".

"Nicky Butt is to step down as head of first-team development at Manchester United after nine years in coaching and player development roles at the heart of our renowned Academy," the club said in a statement.

"He leaves the club with the warmest best wishes of everyone at Manchester United and our thanks for his important contribution to nurturing a succession of homegrown players who have made it to the first team during his time at the Aon Training Complex," it added.

Butt played a key role in bringing in a new generation of talented staff and leaders to take the Academy forward. Marcus Rashford, Scott McTominay, Axel Tuanzebe, Dean Henderson and Mason Greenwood are among those that he has worked closely with during a period when the Academy renewed its reputation as one of the most productive in world football.

"Having come through the Academy myself to play almost 400 games for Manchester United, it has been an absolute privilege to come back and work with a new generation of talent making that same journey," Butt said in a statement.

"I'm proud of the role everyone on the staff plays in giving our young footballers the best possible chance of fulfilling their potential, and the results are clear to see in the increased number of homegrown players reaching the first team. I already know from my playing days how difficult it is to leave Manchester United, but it feels like the right moment for a new professional challenge and I look forward to exploring opportunities that build on the great experiences I've had here over the past nine years," he added.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, first-team manager, said: "Nicky will always be a legend of Manchester United as a six-time Premier League winner and, of course, an integral part of our Treble-winning team. That pedigree has made him a great source of guidance and inspiration to our Academy players since he returned to the club. We are all going to miss him around the Aon Training Complex but Nicky knows he will always be welcome back." (ANI)