An in-depth report and investigation from The Athletic has claimed that a former member of staff at Man Utd has been reported to football’s sexual abuse inquiry.
The allegations date back to when the club were based at The Cliff training ground, with the member of staff named as Billy Watts, as per the Athletic.
It goes on to note that United are co-operating fully with those in charge of the inquiry and have provided as much information as possible relating to the matter.
Further, it describes Watts as the caretaker, kit-man and groundsman at The Cliff during the 1980s, at the time when the allegations are made, and when he was the subject of internal disciplinary action in 1989 which saw moved away from the training ground.
However, details haven’t been provided on the complaint, and so perhaps that’s where the inquiry will come into play to get the facts and deliver a view on what happened.
Watts has since passed away in 2009 and so will not face the allegations made against him, but ultimately the report has delivered an in-depth investigation which involved interviews with key individuals and further information which will no doubt be passed on to the authorities.
In a statement to The Athletic, a United spokesman said: “We have cooperated fully with the Sheldon review in an effort to make sure we were as comprehensive on this important matter as we could be. This involved conducting multiple interviews as part of our wide-ranging enquiries pursuant to the review.
“These included a former employee who had conducted the disciplinary process against the former caretaker in the 1980s, and other current and former employees who worked at the club in the ’70s and ’80s.
“All interviewees provided their full cooperation and information relating to the former caretaker has been included in Manchester United’s submissions to the review. Identifying facts from historical allegations is never an easy process and their report will include any issues relating to Manchester United that are considered relevant by the review team.”
Time will tell what comes of it, but ultimately it sounds as though all parties concerned are working together to discover the facts and deliver a subsequent verdict as all such claims are allegations at this point.
Manchester United have reported a former member of staff to football’s sexual-abuse inquiry.
— Daniel Taylor (@DTathletic) October 31, 2019