Manchester United executive vice chairman Ed Woodward has resigned from the club, the club confirmed on Tuesday.

United had on Sunday announced their plans to join the breakaway European Super League with 11 other clubs, drawing sharp criticism from fans and authorities alike.

Woodward, who joined the Red Devils in 2005, will leave the club at the end of 2021.

“I am proud to have served Manchester United,” Woodward said in a statement released by the club.

Also read: Guardiola says plans for closed Super League format are ‘not sport’

Woodward’s decision to resign as Manchester United chairman comes after a heavy backlash following the announcement of ESL.

Former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was among voices that opposed the decision to move away from the Champions League.

“Talk of a Super League is a move away from 70 years of European club football,” he told Reuters.

“Both as a player for a provincial team Dunfermline in the 60s and as a manager at Aberdeen winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup, for a small provincial club in Scotland it was like climbing Mount Everest.”

Earlier reports also said that Chelsea and Manchester City are planning to leave the proposed ESL after witnessing furious protests by fans