LONDON: Chief executive Richard Arnold is to quit Manchester United after 16 years and on the eve of Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s Ineos group acquiring a 25pc stake in the club for £1.25bn.

Arnold succeeded Ed Woodward in February 2022 and will provide “transitional support” until the end of December.

General counsel Patrick Stewart will take over as chief executive on an interim basis while the club decides on a permanent replacement.

Arnold 52 said: “It has been an incredible privilege to serve this great football club for the past 16 years. Throughout highs and lows, the constant has been the dedication of our employees and fans. I would like to thank all of them for their loyalty and commitment, and wish everyone associated with the club the very best for the future.”

Stewart joined United in 2006 and has represented United at recent Premier League and European Clubs’ Association meetings and managed the club’s legal and regulatory affairs in his role as general counsel.

The Ratcliffe deal is expected to be ratified during November’s international break, and will then await confirmation by the Premier League.