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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Annabel Nugent

Rachel Riley reacts to Mason Greenwood’s exit from Manchester United

Getty / PA Wire

Rachel Riley has reacted to news that Mason Greenwood is to leave Manchester United.

On Monday (21 August), the football club announced the outcome of their six-month investigation into the striker’s conduct.

Both parties mutually agreed that it would be inappropriate for Greenwood to continue his career at Old Trafford, with United stating it will work to find the player a club elsewhere.

The 21-year-old has been suspended by the club since January 2022 over allegations made online.

In October 2022, Greenwood, 21, was charged with attempted rape, controlling and coercive behaviour and assault. The charges were dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in February. Greenwood denied all charges.

Responding to the news of Greenwood’s exit from the club, Riley – who previously said she would not continue to support the club should the striker remain amid the accusations – shared a statement from the charity Women’s Aid.

The lengthy statement acknowledged that Greenwood’s departure would be a “relief to many survivors of domestic and sexual abuse”.

“Football is loved by so many people worldwide, and players are often idolised by fans, so the way that alleged domestic abuse cases are treated in clubs has a huge impact on public understanding about what is accepted and tolerated in society,” they said.

“We have heard firsthand the impact this case and the related materials shared on social media have had on survivors of abuse, and while next steps are established following the outcome of Manchester United’s internal investigation, this will happen away from centre stage of Old Trafford.”

Elsewhere, they continued: “‘Our approach at Women’s Aid remains the same – we want to work collaboratively with football clubs and organisations to increase understanding and awareness of domestic abuse, as part of our ongoing football campaign.’

The Countdown star shared the post on Twitter, adding: “Great statement.”

Riley, 37, also reposted a message from a domestic abuse campaigner who had tweeted: “This decision has exposed the wilful silencing of domestic abuse/sexual assault charities in their mapping and poses serious questions about club bosses.”

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The TV presenter also shared a tweet clarifying that Greenwood had not been “cleared” of the charges against him, but that the charges had been dropped by his accuser.

Riley previously said: “We’ve all seen and heard enough Pretending this is OK would be a huge part of the problem.

“It would be devastating for my club to contribute to a culture that brushes this under the carpet. I really hope they do the right thing.”

On Monday (21 August), United’s chief executive Richard Arnold concluded an internatal investiation in which he decided that Greenwood did not commit criminal offences and that audio of him sounding as though he was trying to force himself upon a woman did not represent the full picture.

— (AP)

Arnold determined, however, and Greenwood agreed that it would be better if he were to move elsewhere and discussions are continuing as to whether his contract will be terminated or if he should be sold or loaned.

Greenwood, who has been suspended by United for 18 months, said he had made mistakes, accepted his reputation was damaged and vowed to be a “better person” in the future.

Rape Crisis offers support for those affected by rape and sexual abuse. You can call them on 0808 802 9999 in England and Wales, 0808 801 0302 in Scotland, and 0800 0246 991 in Northern Ireland, or visit their website at

If you are in the US, you can call Rainn on 800-656-HOPE (4673)

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