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Ed Woodward has landed a surprise new job in the field of artificial intelligence nearly two years after leaving his role as executive vice chairman of Manchester United. Woodward announced that he was stepping down in the wake of the European Super League scandal, which involved the Red Devils before all English clubs withdrew from the controversial proposals due to heavy backlash.
Woodward was already gearing up to leave his post in an unrelated move but the events of the scandal accelerated the confirmation of his departure, according to ESPN. Earlier this year, he was hired to work alongside Newcastle cult hero Tim Krul in the world of esports by joining production company Estars as a non-executive director.
It has since been announced that Woodward has moved into the field of AI by joining the board of SentientSports, who describe themselves as ‘a leading artificial intelligence company who are revolutionising the sports industry by unlocking the full potential of AI in sporting organisations’.
Woodward has been appointed as a strategic advisor and non-executive board member of the company and joins with immediate effect. The 52-year-old has been lined up to help oversee an ‘exciting next phase of business development’ with the aim of helping professional sports clubs to create ‘digital global fanbases’ and direct-to-consumer revenue streams.
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time at one of the world’s largest sports brands, along with a proven track record in driving commercial success, Ed’s insights will be an invaluable asset to our team.
“As SentientSports continues to grow, Ed’s understanding of sports tech will help us to optimise our advanced AI technologies to help our partner clubs grow their global digital fan bases.”
Woodward, who was recently spotted attending the funeral of United legend Sir Bobby Charlton, added: “I am excited to be joining the SentientSports board and working alongside Ryan and the team. The blend of sports and AI technology at SentientSports is truly cutting-edge.
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“With some of the industry’s leading AI talents involved, I see tremendous potential for innovation and expanding global digital fanbases. I’m thrilled to be part of such a dynamic company with the potential to revolutionise the global digital sports landscape.”
Woodward’s association with United began in 2005 when he acted as an advisor to help the Glazer family acquire the club. He took charge of commercial and media operations two years later as the Red Devils grew into one of football’s major financial players.
His tenure was characterised by a sense of discontent from a significant number of United supporters, many of whom held the belief that he was partly responsible for the club’s decline after the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson. His exit was officially announced in early 2021 but he did not leave his role at Old Trafford until last February.
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