Ratcliffe turns Man Utd training ground ‘toxic’

MANCHESTER UNITED’S training ground atmosphere has turned “toxic” after criticism from Sir Jim Ratcliffe.

Part-owner Ratcliffe sent out a memo to all staff recently citing his disappointment after a tour of the facilities.

Ratcliffe (71) said: “I am afraid I was struck in many places by a high degree of untidiness.

“In particular the IT department which frankly was a disgrace and the dressing rooms of the U18 and U21 were not much better.”

He said that the standards “would not come close” to what he had at his INEOS chemical company — but the email has not gone down well.

The IT department he referred to is manned by young adults at the bottom end of the club’s pay grade being asked to do relatively menial tasks.

A source close to them said they feel they have been made scapegoats for a much larger club problem beyond what they do.

The source said the criticism has created a toxic feeling inside Carrington.

There will be a similar feeling in the academy building where staff are used to praise for their work developing young talents to become stars of the future in the first team.

Ethan Wheatley recently became the 250th academy graduate to represent United at senior level.

Now the spotlight is on a dirty changing room.

The criticisms come on top of staff having recently had their FA Cup Final treats of free tickets, travel and lunch revoked to save money.

On top of this some staff who had been able to work from home have been told to get into the offices either in Manchester or London, even though there is not enough room for everyone.

Ratcliffe claims that email traffic dropped by 20 per cent at one of his other companies when they experimented with Fridays working from home.

And during a staff meeting last week employees were bluntly told by Ratcliffe: “If you don’t like it, please seek alternative employment.”

This whole approach has not gone down well and many of the approximate 1,000 employees are concerned about their jobs.

The club initially insisted that Ratcliffe’s arrival as the new 27.7 percent owner of the club had put a spring in everyone’s step — but many of the staff have now lost their bounce.

Among many negative comments about the club Ratcliffe has described the club’s museum as ‘crap’ no doubt to the bemusement of those who set it up and look after it. — Sun.

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