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Glazer family confirm plans to sell Manchester United

Glazer family confirm plans to sell Manchester United

Manchester United‘s owners the Glazer family have released a statement confirming that they plan to explore “strategic alternatives” that could lead to a possible sale of the club.

The announcement comes after several years of multiple protest from supporters against their ownership of the club.

Mass protests took place as soon as their takeover was completed back in 2005, before further demonstrations occurred in 2010 and 2021.

The Red Devils have not won a trophy in the last five seasons and they have not lifted the Premier League title since Sir Alex Ferguson left the club in 2013.

United were one of six Premier League clubs who agreed to join the European Super League in April 2021 before the project collapsed within hours of its launch due to widespread public and political protests.

A month later, United fans forced the postponement of a Premier League match against rivals Liverpool at Old Trafford after protesting against the European Super League and the Glazer family.

General view inside Old Trafford before the match on January 10, 2022© Reuters

The American billionaires bought Man United for £790m ($1.34bn) 17 years ago, and recent reports have suggested that an offer between £5bn and £9bn could persuade them to sell the club.

A statement on Man United’s official website, released on Tuesday evening, read: “Manchester United plc, one of the most successful and historic sports clubs in the world, announces today that the company’s board of directors (the “board”) is commencing a process to explore strategic alternatives for the club.

“The process is designed to enhance the club’s future growth, with the ultimate goal of positioning the club to capitalize on opportunities both on the pitch and commercially.

“As part of this process, the board will consider all strategic alternatives, including new investment into the club, a sale, or other transactions involving the company.

“This will include an assessment of several initiatives to strengthen the club, including stadium and infrastructure redevelopment, and expansion of the club’s commercial operations on a global scale, each in the context of enhancing the long-term success of the club’s men’s, women’s and academy teams, and bringing benefits to fans and other stakeholders.”

Executive co-chairmen and directors, Avram Glazer and Joel Glazer said: “The strength of Manchester United rests on the passion and loyalty of our global community of 1.1 billion fans and followers.

“As we seek to continue building on the club’s history of success, the board has authorized a thorough evaluation of strategic alternatives.

Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo with manager Erik ten Hag before coming on as a substitute on August 22, 2022© Reuters

“We will evaluate all options to ensure that we best serve our fans and that Manchester United maximizes the significant growth opportunities available to the club today and in the future.

“Throughout this process we will remain fully focused on serving the best interests of our fans, shareholders, and various stakeholders.”

American investment firm Raine Group, who were involved in the £4.25bn sale of Chelsea in May, are acting as Man United’s exclusive financial advisor, with Latham & Watkins LLP acting as the legal counsel to the club.

The statement added: “There can be no assurance that the review being undertaken will result in any transaction involving the company.

“Manchester United does not intend to make further announcements regarding the review unless and until the board has approved a specific transaction or other course of action requiring a formal announcement.”

Man United also confirmed on Tuesday that five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo has left the club by mutual agreement with immediate effect following an explosive interview with Piers Morgan released last week.

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