Friday, April 19, 2024

Bid withdrawn to purchase Manchester United


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Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani has withdrawn from the process to buy Manchester United, BBC Sport has been told.

Sheikh Jassim had bid £5bn for the club but further talks this week have broken down.

The Glazer family, who bought United for £790m in 2005, announced in November 2022 they were considering selling.

British businessman Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s Ineos Group was the other main bidder.

Sources have told BBC Sport, Ratcliffe is now hoping to conclude a deal for a minority stake in the club, thought to be 25 per cent.

Earlier this month BBC Sport reported Ratcliffe was considering whether to offer to buy a minority stake in the club in an effort to break the impasse over the ownership situation.

The Glazer family’s announcement last year that they were considering selling United led to a flurry of interest but only two offers, from Ineos and Sheikh Jassim.

Both tabled bids of about £5bn.

Sheikh Jassim’s camp have always maintained he was only interested in buying the club outright.

United supporters have held demonstrations against the Glazer family inside and outside Old Trafford.

The club are tenth in the Premier League, having lost four of their opening eight matches, and were beaten in their first two Champions League games.

It is understood that Sheikh Jassim’s bid would have been a fully cash offer and would have cleared all old debt. There would also have been more than £1.4bn to finance new stadium plans, new training centre facilities, buy players and also for community regeneration projects.

Figures in March showed United owed £969.6m through a combination of gross debt, bank borrowings and outstanding transfer fees with associated payments.

There has been no public comment from any party around this latest development. (BBC)


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