Soccer

Man Utd make official approach for Southampton director of football Jason Wilcox

Compensation terms are understood to be a sticking point.

Manchester United’s Old Trafford ground
Manchester United's Old Trafford ground Manchester United’s Old Trafford ground (Martin Rickett/PA)

Manchester United have made an official approach to hire Southampton director of football Jason Wilcox, the PA news agency understands.

Ineos recently took charge of football operations at Old Trafford as part of the deal that saw Sir Jim Ratcliffe become minority owner of the Premier League club.

United are looking for a resolution to hire Newcastle sporting director Dan Ashworth, who has been placed on garden leave, and negotiations are also under way to bring in Wilcox.

The 53-year-old joined Sky Bet Championship side Southampton as director of football from Manchester City last summer, having worked up to the role of academy director during 11 years at the Premier League club.

Jason Wilcox (second right) during his time with Manchester City .
Jason Wilcox (second right) during his time with Manchester City Jason Wilcox (second right) during his time with Manchester City . (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Wilcox is now subject of an approach from United, although compensation terms are a sticking point.

The Red Devils have offered compensation commensurate to a year’s salary, but Southampton want a bigger package.

United want Wilcox in place for the summer and are hoping for an amicable outcome.

A report emerged during Southampton’s match against Ipswich on Monday evening that he has resigned, which would mean serving a 12-month notice period before he could take up a new role.

Wilcox is understood to have a good relationship with incoming United chief executive Omar Berrada from their time together at City.

Russell Martin, pictured, was asked about the Wilcox situation after Saints’ defeat at Portman Road
Ipswich Town v Southampton – Sky Bet Championship – Portman Road Russell Martin, pictured, was asked about the Wilcox situation after Saints’ defeat at Portman Road (John Walton/PA)

Manager Russell Martin was asked about the formal approach for Wilcox in the press conference following Southampton’s stoppage-time 3-2 defeat at Portman Road.

“I would say give me at least 10 minutes to get over the disappointment of tonight and we’ll chat at some point this week and I’m sure I’ll have more for you,” he said.

“I’ve not spoken to the club (about it). You know my feelings on Jason, and I’ll have a chat with him after.

“I’ve just had a text saying how proud he was of the performance. The rest is, once I’m told I’ll let you know.”