The Manchester United Supporters Trust have said that any potential new owner of the club must be willing to ‘invest in a bid to help the club return to former glories’.
A spokesman for Sir Jim Ratcliffe has said that the British billionaire is interested in buying a stake in the Red Devils, with the Glazer family said to be open to bringing in more investment.
“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.”
The Glazer family have owned the 20-time English champions since 2005, but their position at the club continues to come under fire from supporters and former players, including Gary Neville.
MUST have now released a statement reacting to the latest developments, insisting that it has to be “the right change” for the football club.
“Speculation is mounting about a potential change of ownership or new investors at Manchester United. Whilst supporters have called for change, of course this has to be the right change,” said MUST in a statement.
“Any prospective new owner or investor has to be committed to the culture, ethos and best traditions of the club. They have to be willing to invest to restore United to former glories, and that investment must be real new money spent on the playing side and the stadium.
“Finally any new ownership structure must embed supporters, including a degree of fan share ownership, in their operating model.
“These are the criteria supporters will judge any bid on. We are open to dialogue with any bidder, and look forward to any such discussions.”
Man United have opened their 2022-23 Premier League campaign with back-to-back defeats to Brighton & Hove Albion and Brentford, which has left them at the bottom of the table.
The club have only managed to bring in three new players this summer – Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez – but there are expected to be further additions before the end of the transfer window.
Following the 4-0 defeat to Brentford last weekend, former Man United captain Gary Neville was hugely critical of the Glazer family for their running of the club.
“Joel Glazer’s got to get on a plane tomorrow, get over to Manchester and he has got to start and divert the issues away from the club, and tell everyone what the hell his plan is for the football club. What is he doing?” Neville told Sky Sports News.
“When a business is failing and it’s not performing, it is the owners of that business [who are to blame]. It is really simple. It is failing miserably. They took about £24m out of the club two months ago and they have now got a decrepit, rotting stadium, which is, to be fair, second-rate, when it used to be the best in the world 15-20 years ago.
“You have got a football club where they haven’t got a clue. They have bankers in charge of the football club, not making football decisions. They have not appointed a sporting director.
“We can look at the players all you like, but there are that many big things that need to be put right first, they have got to show up and basically face the music. Now is the time. They can’t keep hiding in Tampa and thinking that nothing is going to come back to them.”
Man United will be bidding to return to winning ways in the Premier League when they welcome bitter rivals Liverpool to Old Trafford on Monday night.