BREAKING:Manchester United issues a statement regarding Mason Greenwood amidst reports of his imminent return

Manchester United has issued a statement concerning Mason Greenwood, responding to reports indicating his imminent return to the Premier League club.

In a development dating back to February 2 of this year, Greater Manchester Police communicated that the 21-year-old would no longer be subject to criminal proceedings.

Greenwood had been arrested in January 2022 and subsequently faced charges of attempted rape, engaging in controlling and coercive behavior, and assault.

However, earlier this year, all charges against him were dropped. This occurred after key witnesses withdrew their involvement in the case, and new evidence emerged during the police investigation.

Currently, Greenwood remains under suspension by Manchester United. The club is in the process of conducting an internal investigation into his conduct, which will influence the determination of his future with the team.

He has neither participated in first-team training nor been available for play since his initial arrest.

United was initially expected to reach a final decision regarding Greenwood’s status before the commencement of the Premier League season.

However, this decision was postponed, purportedly to seek input from members of the club’s women’s team who are currently participating in the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Several Man Utd players are still involved in the tournament, with England reaching Sunday’s final against Spain following Wednesday’s 3-1 victory over Australia.

The Athleticreported on Wednesday that United chief executive Richard Arnold told the club’s executive leadership in the first week of August that United were planning to bring back Greenwood.

“Part of that plan for Greenwood’s reintegration with the men’s first team, Arnold intended to record a video explaining the decision that would be shared both with staff and the general public,” read the report.

The proposed date for the announcement was Friday August 4 but it failed to happen.

United have now released a public statement in response to the reports that Greenwood is set to return, insisting a final decision is yet to be made.

“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,” read a club statement.

“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.”

Manchester United chief operating officer Colette Roche addressed Greenwood’s uncertain status in a separate interview withThe Athletic, making it clear the final decision over whether to retain him will be made solely by the club and not by partners such as sponsors.

“We’ve done a really detailed and thorough internal investigation and we’ve asked as many people as we can around what happened and try to understand it beyond the original investigation done by the police,” said Roche.

“You’d expect us to engage with people who were relevant in terms of stakeholder groups. And now we just need to make the decision.

“That decision is firmly a decision that’s on us.”

Greenwood is contracted to United until 2025, with the option of an additional year, and manager Erik ten Hag has refused to rule out the player returning to the squad at some point.

In an interview withThe Timesearlier this year, Ten Hag said that Greenwood had “showed in the past that he is capable of doing that [centre forward role]” but said a decision over his future would be made by the club.

Greenwood has not played for United in 20 months, with his last appearance for the club coming against West Ham on January 22, 2022.

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