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Jim Ratcliffe ‘preparing to bid for Manchester United’

Jim Ratcliffe ‘preparing to bid for Manchester United’

Ineos billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe is reportedly preparing a bid for Manchester United, with the Glazer family confirming that the club could potentially be for sale.

On Monday, a statement from the Man United owners on the club’s official website said that they were considering “all strategic alternatives”, with the 20-time English champions seemingly available for purchase.

“Manchester United plc (NYSE:MANU), 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,” read the statement.

“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.

© Reuters

“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.”

According to The Telegraph, Ratcliffe is preparing a bid for Man United, with the billionaire first expressing an interest in purchasing the club over the summer.

“If the club is for sale, Jim is definitely a potential buyer,” a spokesman for Ratcliffe told The Times. “If something like this was possible, we would be interested in talking with a view to long-term ownership.

“This is not about the money that has been spent or not spent. Jim is looking at what can be done now and, knowing how important the club is to the city, it feels like the time is right for a reset.”

Manchester United Old Trafford© Image by Jakub Mularski from Pixabay

Ratcliffe, who is a Man United fan, failed with a late offer for Chelsea in May, while he had been linked with the purchase of Liverpool before a takeover was ruled out.

The billionaire, though, is said to be wary of overpaying for the club, with the Glazer family said to be looking for a fee in excess of £5bn.

“I met with Joel and Avram, and they are the nicest people, and they don’t want to sell it,” Ratcliffe said at an FT Conference in October.

“If it had been for sale in the summer, yes, we would probably have had a go, following on from the Chelsea thing. But we can’t sit around hoping one day Manchester United will become available.”

There have also been suggestions that Man United’s former midfielder David Beckham would be open to joining a consortium to buy the club.

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