Michael Knighton has revealed that his plans to submit a bid to buy Manchester United are “moving forward”.
The 70-year-old previously failed with a takeover bid of around £20m to buy the Red Devils back in 1989, before serving on the club’s board of directors between 1989 and 1992.
Last month, Knighton expressed his desire to launch a new takeover bid to purchase the club from the Glazers, who United fans have vented their frustrations to for several years.
Speaking to Man United The Religion, Knighton said: “Everyone knows that we need new ownership of this football club. That is my aim, those are my objectives.
“I’m making good progress, I continue to talk to the people, I’ve got some good pledges with good finance.
“We are now working on the offer document. Remember, it’s a hostile bid – that simply means the club isn’t officially for sale, but my intention is to present these owners with a legitimate and potent and proper commercial offer to say ‘you’ve run out of road, it’s time to go, because your time is up’.
“And frankly the fans worldwide have had enough of this regime. We are a club in crisis, and we all know the reason why. We have an inept and frankly useless ownership who knows little about this game of football.”
Knighton is yet to make a formal offer to buy United, but he has provided a positive update on Twitter regarding his plans.
The Englishman posted: “Thank you ALL for the wonderful messages of support. There is much going on behind the scenes.
“Things are moving forward as planned. I apologise I can’t be on this platform more, just bogged down in meetings. God bless & every good wish to all of you. [Your] support is greatly appreciated.”
In a separate interview with the Daily Mail, Knighton suggested that there were similarities between United in the present day and back in 1989.
“There are strong comparisons between Manchester United in 1989 and Manchester United now, apart from the figures involved becoming much bigger,” he added.
“United was a failing business in ’89, they never made any money. When I was juggling that ball, they’d just announced losses of £1.3m on a turnover of £7m. The fans hated the Edwards family [the owners] and they hadn’t won the league for 22 years.”
Knighton is also confident that the Glazers will leave United for good by next year, adding: “United will cost a premium in excess of their share because of its name and history. Yet the owners have damaged the brand and lumbered it with debt. A reasonable price would be well under the reported £4.5bn they once turned down.
“The Glazers will know they are driving the value of their own asset down. They will not own Manchester United this time next year.”
Knighton is understood to have held talks with three billionaires over forming a consortium, including Nice owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe, who has expressed his interest in buying Man United.