Manchester United chief executive Richard Arnold reportedly told senior staff that Mason Greenwood would be returning to the club two weeks ago.
The Red Devils carried out a six-month internal investigation after the 21-year-old striker’s charges of attempted rape, assault, and coercive control were dropped in February.
Arnold reportedly informed United’s leadership team of the plan to bring back Greenwood, who has been out of action since his arrest in January 2022, two weeks ago on August 4.
According to The Athletic, Arnold intended to record and share a video explaining Greenwood’s reintegration with the men’s first team to staff and the general public.
Arnold’s original plan was for Greenwood not to be involved in any appearances with the club’s charitable arm, the Manchester United Foundation, despite his return to Erik ten Hag’s first-team squad.
The Premier League club, who initially remained silent on the issue for several months while undergoing their own internal six-month probe, released a statement on Wednesday.
It read: ‘Following the dropping of all charges against Mason Greenwood in February 2023, Manchester United has conducted a thorough investigation into the allegations made against him.
‘This has drawn on extensive evidence and context not in the public domain, and we have heard from numerous people with direct involvement or knowledge of the case.
‘Throughout this process, the welfare and perspective of the alleged victim has been central to the club’s inquiries, and we respect her right to lifelong anonymity.
‘We also have responsibilities to Mason as an employee, as a young person who has been with the club since the age of seven, and as a new father with a partner.
‘The fact-finding phase of our investigation is now complete, and we are in the final stages of making a decision on Mason’s future.
‘Contrary to media speculation, that decision has not yet been made and is currently the subject of intensive internal deliberation. Responsibility ultimately rests with the Chief Executive Officer.
‘Once made, the decision will be communicated and explained to the club’s internal and external stakeholders.
‘This has been a difficult case for everyone associated with Manchester United, and we understand the strong opinions it has provoked based on the partial evidence in the public domain. We ask for patience as we work through the final stages of this carefully considered process.’
United’s chief operating officer Collette Roche also opened up on the investigation on Wednesday, describing the probe as ‘detailed and thorough’.