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Super League plans ‘worst case of bullying’, says ex-Manchester United midfielder Butt

Several of the club’s former players have criticised those in charge at Old Trafford for their role in forming the proposed breakaway competition

Former Manchester United star Nicky Butt says that the recent Super League plans were a demonstration of “the worst case of bullying”.

Man Utd were among 12 teams confirmed to be part of the breakaway league, which fell apart after each of the six English clubs involved pulled out amid overwhelming backlash.

Ed Woodward, Man Utd’s executive vice-chairman, has since resigned and will step down at the end of the year, while co-chairman Joel Glazer penned an open letter to supporters where he admitted that the club got it wrong over the Super League proposals.

What dd Butt have to say?

“I don’t think an apology is too great anyway if I’m honest,” he told Sky Sports. “I think what happened should never have happened.

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“What happened is the worst case of bullying in my opinion, from powerful people, so whether they apologise or not is irrelevant to me really.”

When asked how long it would take for ownership to regain the supporters’ trust, he added: “A hell of a long time and I don’t see how it’s possible. It’s difficult to regain someone’s trust after going behind people’s backs for so long. It’s going to be difficult, I don’t know how they do it.

“I think that’s how some of these businessmen work. They work in the shadows if you like and they do what they think is right, but I think the shocking thing is they can’t have empathy for the fans who make this sport so great.

“Without the fans, the sport is nothing, and to not be on board with what the fans want, that’s the alarming thing for me.

“So it’s a lesson to people who come into the country and come into powerful football clubs and think they can do whatever they want because they are owners and they are very, very wealthy.

“Over the past few hours in this country it has proved not to be the case.”

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Man Utd legends respond

Butt isn’t the only former Manchester United star to have harsh words for his old club this week.

Gary Neville called all of those involved with the Super League “scavengers”, later demanding further repercussions at Manchester United after Ed Woodward’s resignation, insisting “the trunk of the tree is gone, now let’s go for the roots”.

Rio Ferdinand, meanwhile, admitted to being “embarrassed” by the club’s involvement in the plans, which he describes as a declaration of “war on football”.

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