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The takeover of Premier League giants Manchester United: record price, interested parties, deadline…

Current United owners the Glazer family are open to new investment or a full sale, as long as a record price is met.

La excusa que usaría la familia Glazer para no vender al Manchester United

A minimum of five bids are expected to be made to take over Premier League giants Manchester United, although media in England have speculated that as many as eight offers to buy the club could be made by the time Wednesday’s 9:00 p.m. UK deadline (5:00 p.m. ET) comes around.

How much will it take to buy Manchester United?

Glazer family, the current owners, are looking for new investment partners and are open to selling a percentage of their shares in the Red Devils, although they are also said to be willing to sell the club if a bid of approximately €7 billion (around $7.55 billion) comes in. That is how much they value United and such a sale would far exceed the reported $4.65 billion Walmart heir Rob Walton paid last June to acquire the NFL’s Denver Broncos. That is currently the all-time record purchase for a professional sports club, although LA Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly’s acquisition of Chelsea is expected to reach $5.2 billion once all future investments are made.

Jim Ratcliffe visiting Old Trafford.
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Jim Ratcliffe visiting Old Trafford.Peter Byrne - PA ImagesGetty

Who are the known interested parties?

Only two bidders have made their interest public as things stand. The first of them is Jim Ratcliffe, the CEO of INEOS, one of the world’s biggest chemicals companies. The Greater Manchester-born business already owns Ligue 1 club Nice and has been a United fan since childhood. However, he recently revealed in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that he won’t be paying the quoted price: “How do you decide the price of a painting? How do you value a house? It’s not about how much it cost to build it or how much it cost to paint it. What you don’t want to do is pay a stupid price for things because then you’ll regret it later.”

Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani chats with United legend David Beckham.
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Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani chats with United legend David Beckham.

Ratcliffe met with Manchester United officials last Friday. The day before, representatives of the other known interested party, Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani, had spent 10 hours at Old Trafford and United’s Carrington training complex.

Sheikh Jassim is the son of the former Prime Minister of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber bin Mohammed bin Thani Al Thani, and has links to the Qatar Investment Authority, of which his father was the chairman and CEO. The Sheikh himself did not make the trip to Manchester but Shahzad Shahbaz, the preisdent of Sheikh Jassim’s recently founded Nine Two Foundation - and Fady Bakhos, his personal advisor, were pleased with how the “positive and constructive” talks went.


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