How the Manchester United star fell from grace

Mason Greenwood’s future lies away from Manchester United after the club announced their decision following the conclusion of an internal investigation into the forward.

The forward joined the club aged six and made his professional debut at only 17, when he became the youngest player ever to play for United in the Champions League. He established himself in the first team and soon earned his first England cap, playing against Iceland in an away match in September 2020.

However, Gareth Southgate sent home both Greenwood and teammate Phil Foden after they were caught breaking Covid guidelines by meeting women in a hotel room. Greenwood has not appeared again for England but continued to play for Manchester United, until his arrest last year.

Now, United have confirmed Greenwood will leave the club, with the two parties “mutually” agreeing the decision.

30 January 2022

Greenwood is arrested by Greater Manchester Police after a woman accuses the player of a number of assaults via social media. She posts video, photographs and audio recordings on Instagram.

Manchester United suspend the player with a statement saying he will “not return to training or play matches until further notice”.

31 January 2022

The following day, A spokesperson for sportswear giant Nike, which sponsors Greenwood, says: “We have suspended our relationship with Mason Greenwood. We are deeply concerned by the disturbing allegations and will continue to closely monitor the situation.”

Greenwood is also removed from FIFA 22 by EA Sports.

1 February 2022

Greenwood is further arrested on suspicion of sexual assault and threats to kill, with police granted additional time to speak to the Manchester United striker.

The following day he is released on bail pending further investigation.

7 February 2022

Nike officially ends its sponsorship of Greenwood following his arrest on suspicion of rape and assault. In a fresh statement, the company says: “Mason Greenwood is no longer a Nike athlete.”

The club offer supporters the opportunity to exchange replica shirts which bear Greenwood’s name.

15 October 2022

Greenwood – who remains suspended by Manchester United – is arrested again, this time for an alleged breach of his bail conditions.

Later that day, the Crown Prosecution Service announces it is charging the 21-year-old with attempted rape, engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

17 October 2022

Greenwood appears at Manchester Magistrates’ Court. He stands in the dock accused of assault and “repeatedly engaging” in controlling and coercive behaviour. The player speaks only to confirm his name, date of birth and address.

Two days later he is granted bail and is released from custody.

A sketch of Mason Greenwood appearing in the dock at Manchester Magistrates’ Court (Elizabeth Cook/PA) (PA Wire)

21 November 2022

Greenwood appears at Minshull Street Crown Court wearing a black suit with a black hoodie covering his head. A trial date is set for November 2023, with the case expected to last 10 days. Pleas to the charges are not entered.

Greenwood’s parents are in court for the hearing, which lasts under 10 minutes.

Greenwood leaves Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court (Getty Images)

2 February 2023

All charges against Greenwood are dropped after the Crown Prosecution Service says key witnesses withdrew their involvement and new material came to light.

“We have a duty to keep cases under continuous review,” the CPS said. “In this case a combination of the withdrawal of key witnesses and new material that came to light meant there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction. In these circumstances, we are under a duty to stop the case. We have explained our decision to all parties.”

Manchester United announce they will launch their own internal investigation, with no timeframe given.

Greenwood finally makes a public comment on the case, saying in a statement: “I am relieved that this matter is now over and I would like to thank my family, loved ones and friends for their support.”

6 February 2023

Nike confirm that Greenwood is no longer associated with them, despite the Manchester United attacker updating a social media page to include a link to them.

The player, who had not posted to Instagram since his arrest, updated his page to link to Nike Football’s account but the company said he has not returned to their pool of clients.

30 May 2023

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag tells the Times newspaper it is not his decision whether Greenwood plays in his team. The player, who is still suspended pending the conclusion of United’s investigation, is contracted to the club until 2025.

Greenwood is preparing to make a return to football (Reuters)

12 August 2023

Manchester United delay making a final decision on Greenwood’s future, saying they want to consult with members of their women’s team, three of whom are playing for England at the Women’s World Cup in Australia.

17 August 2023

Manchester United say they have concluded their investigation into Greenwood’s conduct but that no decision has yet been made on his future.

Chief executive Richard Arnold will determine if he will return to feature at Old Trafford – with intense internal conversations ongoing.

21 August 2023

Manchester United release statement confirming Greenwood will be allowed to leave and continue his career elsewhere, citing a “mutual” agreement between player and club.

Greenwood’s own statement says he had to “fully accept I made mistakes in my relationship, and I take my share of responsibility for the situations.” He described the decision as a “collaborative process” and will look for a new team in due course.


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