Ed Woodward is facing fresh pressure at Manchester United after a disappointing summer market. The Daily Mail says United's new chief executive had been expected to sign a new long-term contract with shirt suppliers Nike for as much as £1billion before the six-month exclusive negotiating period ended last month.

Woodward had been confident as long ago as last October of agreeing a 'major increase' in terms with Nike, whose current £303m deal expires at the end of next season.

The next United kit partnership is estimated to be worth 10 figures if the length of the contract is similar to the present 13-year agreement.

There is time pressure on Woodward and his commercial staff because the big sports clothing companies, with whom United are now free to negotiate, generally need 18 months' notice to deliver a new kit range.

A Nike spokeswoman said: "We have a great partnership with Manchester United and are still talking to them."

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