Dan Ashworth worked at the FA and Brighton before joining Newcastle

Manchester United have approached Newcastle sporting director Dan Ashworth about joining the club.

Ashworth has a long-standing relationship with Ineos head of sport Sir Dave Brailsford.

Talks over compensation are yet to take place between the two clubs.

If a deal is agreed, it would be another significant move by Ineos, whose 25% ownership of Manchester United is set to be confirmed early next week.

It is understood Ashworth is keen on a move to Old Trafford, having established a relationship with Brailsford during his time in a previous role at the Football Association (FA).

In addition to Brailsford and Jean Claude Blanc taking seats on the football club board, they have also come together with the Glazer family to bring Omar Berrada in from Manchester City as their new chief executive.

Berrada is currently on gardening leave and is due to take up his role in the summer.

Ashworth is also likely to have to serve a period of leave, as was the case when he left Brighton before joining Newcastle in 2022.

The 52-year-old has a reputation for being one of the best football directors in the game and was credited with England’s phenomenal success at youth level in 2017, when they won both the Under-17 and Under-20 World Cups.

He then helped to shape Brighton’s rise up the Premier League through the appointment of Graham Potter as manager after Chris Hughton was sacked.

Providing the deal goes through, Ashworth is likely to be given significant power at United.

Brailsford led British cycling to unprecedented success on the track before moving across to the road with the former Sky team, which now races under Ineos’ colours.

While understands the demands of elite sport he is aware of the need for football expertise.

United’s recruitment in particular has been poor in recent years, with former chief executive Richard Arnold candidly admitting to fans the club had ‘burned’ £1bn.

Making Antony, the 23-year-old Brazil winger, the club’s second most expensive purchase behind Paul Pogba is viewed as an indication the situation has got no better following Erik ten Hag’s arrival as manager.

Ashworth is also likely to have a major input into the club’s scouting systems.

Ten Hag wants new sporting director on ‘same page’

While Ten Hag says the decision over a new sporting director is not up to him, he added it’s important that whoever is appointed is “on the same page”.

“I think it is very important you are on one page about football philosophy, about football tactics, about the profiles of the players you need in the team,” said the Dutchman.

“It is one of the most important factors to develop a good team, that you have the right players but also the right characters.

“With the number of games you need people around who are on the same page, working on the same targets to achieve the high ambitions.”