Mason Greenwood ‘may face a TV interview as part of a potential phased return to Manchester United that would also include a form of counselling or therapy’ as he remains suspended by the club after rape and assault charges against him were dropped
- Alleged rape and assault charges against Greenwood were dropped last month
- Manchester United are continuing to conduct an internal investigation into him
- The Athletic released a report outlining the current state of play on his future
Mason Greenwood could reportedly face a TV interview where he is challenged on the events leading up to the charges of rape and assault against him being dropped, as part of a potential phased return to Manchester United, according to The Athletic.
Greenwood, 21, was arrested in January 2022 and suspended on full pay by United a short time later after charges of alleged rape and assault were made against him.
However, the Crown Prosecution Service announced last month that the charges had been dropped after ‘key witnesses’ withdrew their involvement.
After the news was made public, United released a short statement which explained how they would conduct an internal investigation to decide his future.
A month on since the criminal investigation into Greenwood was dropped, The Athletic has published a report regarding the state of play over his future with the Red Devils following conversations with individuals familiar with the situation.
Mason Greenwood remains suspended by Manchester United, with an internal investigation into his future ongoing after rape and assault charges against him were dropped last month
A report in The Athletic has revealed the state of play on Greenwood’s future a month on
The report firstly states no decisions have been taken and the club is continuing to conduct the aforementioned internal investigation as they seek to fully understand the situation that led to the original complaint last year.
Greenwood’s future at United remains in the balance, with United representatives having met with the forward as part of the investigation.
Several options are on the table for the 21-year-old, including terminating his contract, but the possible reintroduction of Greenwood to the first team squad as part of a potential phased return to football is also something being considered, according to The Athletic report.
If he were to remain at the club, United would be expected to reportedly follow a gradual process that would take into account the views of fan groups, sponsors and the United women’s team at varying stages.
The club would likely encourage Greenwood to take part in rehabilitation, which would initially include counselling or therapy.
This could also include facing a TV interview and one which The Athletic reports as ‘in which he is challenged on the events that have taken him to this point’.
Furthermore, there is the reported possibility that if Greenwood did return to the squad, United could portray the forward as a young man who has made mistakes and is deeply sorry for his actions – although this would only be the case if they consider it to be truthful from their investigation.
If this were the case, they would also reportedly feel a responsibility to help Greenwood on his recovery – with the forward having been at the club since the age of six.
A report in The Sun last week suggested Greenwood’s partner is pregnant and he is due to become a father, which comes after they also reported that he had met up with some former United team-mates.
However, despite the club not commenting formally, The Athletic stated club sources hinted it is ‘premature’ to argue the club is going one way or another in terms of a decision with the ‘process’ ongoing.
The report also stated any final decision after the club’s investigation will be taken by co-owner Joel Glazer and CEO Richard Arnold – although it must be acknowledged this could change if United’s ownership changes hands before the investigation concludes with the club currently up for sale.
However, The Athletic also explained how United are aware of the reputational damage restoring Greenwood to the first team squad could do.
This is particularly pertinent with regards to United’s women’s team, after reports broke last month that members of the side are ‘deeply uncomfortable’ with Greenwood returning to the club.
Manager Erik ten Hag has not publicly commented on Greenwood since the charges were dropped, apart from referring to the club’s statement when he was asked in a press conference.
However, he is reported to have spoken to the forward and his view will likely be taken into consideration by Arnold and Glazer in any decision, while director of football John Murtough will also be consulted.
Any final decision on him will be taken by co-owner Joel Glazer (L) and CEO Richard Arnold (R)
United boss Erik ten Hag – who has not publicly commented on Greenwood since the charges were dropped – is likely to have his view on the forward’s future taken into consideration
Ultimately, The Athletic report how the decision on Greenwood will need to be signed off by the very top of the club, with the investigation currently only involving an extremely small group of senior United executives along with the club’s legal team.
It has previously been confirmed the forward – who has a £70,000-a-week contract until 2025 with the option of a further year at United – will not return to training or playing while the internal probe is ongoing though.
His last match for United was in the 1-0 Premier League win over West Ham on January 22 last year, with his last goal coming in a 3-1 win at Brentford three days beforehand.
Greenwood’s No 11 shirt number has not been re-allocated. His sole appearance for the England national team was against Iceland in September 2020.
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