The Glazer family are expected to announce their intention to sell part or all of the club they have owned for 17 years
The Glazer family are expected to demand at least £5billion if they decide to trigger the biggest auction in world football by going ahead with a full sale of Manchester United.
I expects the Glazer family to direct investment bankers to begin a process that will seek outside investment, the sale of a stake in the club, or even an outright sale of what is arguably the world’s most iconic football team.
The story was first reported by Sky News and is intended to accurately reflect the state of affairs – which will give fans hope that the Glazers are preparing to cede control after 17 years of fan protests and on-field decline.
Manchester United didn’t comment on the reports on Tuesday night but an announcement is expected to come soon.
The news capped a day of intrigue at Old Trafford, which saw the club agree to an amicable termination of Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract. A possible sale of the club by the Glazer family would have far-reaching consequences for United, the Premier League and even rivals Liverpool – who are also up for sale.
Sources believe United have moved partly because Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group are also looking to invest or sell.
The belief is that many of the syndicates that have the sort of funds that would allow the Reds to be bought would also be interested in a possible Manchester United purchase.
Market insiders believe American syndicates remain Liverpool’s most likely buyers and a prestige club like Manchester United is likely to attract similar interest. Jim Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest man, is said to be interested in a possible purchase when the Glazers are ready to sell and all eyes will now be on him.
However, the price would be a record for a football club and all investors would have to dig deep into their pockets. Manchester United are in dire need of investment on and off the pitch with Old Trafford redevelopment on the horizon.
That said football business expert Kieran MaguireI: “Realistically they would be looking for £5bn including the existing debt. United have a larger fan base and commercial clout than Chelsea and greater future-oriented opportunities.”