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Qataris visiting, Ratcliffe flying to Manchester – Man Utd takeover update

Manchester United are potentially in the midst of a takeover and the situation appears to be gathering pace if the latest reports are to be believed.

Kaveh Solhekol of Sky Sports News revealed the club have invited two known bidders to Carrington to be given a presentation by Football Director John Murtough.

He said: “Qatari delegation, representing the bid for United made by Sheikh Jassim, is visiting Old Trafford. Jassim’s close personal advisors, lawyers, accountants and bankers (will be) speaking with key people at United. They’ll also be visiting the training ground to be given a presentation by Murtough.

“Jim Ratcliffe of INEOS, the other known bidder, will be there in person. He owns Nice who are playing (FC Sheriff) in (the Europa League) on Thursday. I think the plan is to watch that game in the south of France and fly to Manchester (Friday).”

United are currently owned by the Glazer family who have been offered investment by American hedge fund Elliott Management, allowing them to stay in their position.

But the family are asking for £6 billion while playing down wanting to sell. Solhekol is unsure why they’ve been so public in inviting bidders if they weren’t planning to leave.

When asked if the Glazers actually want to accept a bid, he replied: “We don’t know 100% if they want to sell the club. What they’ve said is that they’re looking for alternative strategies.

“So they may decide to borrow some more money (or) sell a minority stake. But the fact this process has gone on for so long and is so public (suggests a sale).

“The Glazers could have dampened down expectations if they didn’t want to sell the club.”

Malcolm Glazer bought United in 2005 for £790 million. After his death in 2014, Joel and Avram Glazer became co-chairmen.

As per Swiss Ramble, the family pay themselves dividends from the club and have taken out £1.1bn since the takeover – £743m in interest payments, £147m in debt repayments and £166m in dividends.

No Premier League club had taken out more money than the Glazers in the last decade, resulting in fury from supporters who believe there has been a lack of significant investment for transfers.

But there’s no guarantee the latest talks with prospective buyers will even result in the Glazers leaving, so disgruntled supporters are still in the dark about the direction of their football club.

Thankfully, things are going better on the pitch with a Carabao Cup in the bag under Erik ten Hag and a top-three finish on the cards. United could even win the FA Cup and Europa League this season.