Apple are interested in buying Man Utd, according to reports, after the Premier League club was put up for sale on Tuesday.
The Red Devils supporters have been dissatisfied at the Glazer family’s ownership of their club for many years with the Americans taking a controlling stake in the Premier League outfit in 2005.
Fans have been angered by the lack of the Glazers’ own money that they’ve put into the club, while they’ve been happy to take dividends back out.
There have been numerous big-money transfer failures on their watch, while they have failed to improve the stadium and training facilities, highlighted by Cristiano Ronaldo’s recent comments.
Just a couple of hours after Ronaldo’s mutually agreed departure, following his explosive interview with Piers Morgan, came news of far more significance for fans long opposed to the unpopular American owners.
After 17 years in charge the Glazers now seem prepared to relinquish control after the club announced it was “exploring strategic alternatives” which do include a sale.
Man Utd said the board of directors have started a process “designed to enhance the club’s future growth” with the intention of maximising opportunities on and off the pitch.
A club statement read: “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.”
The Raine Group, which facilitated the sale of Premier League rivals Chelsea over the summer, is acting as United’s exclusive financial advisor, with Rothschild and Co performing the same role to the Glazer family shareholders.
While the Glazers’ apparent willingness to consider a sale having faced many years of fan protests – which have escalated in the last couple of years with the club’s involvement in the failed European Super League provoking particular anger – will be welcomed, Man Utd stress there are no guarantees.
“There can be no assurance that the review being undertaken will result in any transaction involving the company,” the statement added on Tuesday.
But there seems to be no lack of potential suitors to buy the club with the Daily Star claiming that tech giants Apple are the latest group to throw their hat into the ring.
The Daily Star insists that Man Utd would become the ‘richest club in the world’ if Apple completed ‘a blockbuster takeover’ of the Premier League outfit.
Apple ‘have expressed an interest in discussing a potential deal’ and any takeover would mean Man Utd would have ‘more funds at their disposal than both Manchester City and Newcastle’ with the company having a ‘estimated net worth, as of this month, of £2trillion’.
The report adds that Apple CEO Tim Cook ‘is keen to explore the opportunities owning United could provide – and will line up talks with the banks appointed to oversee the sale’.
The Daily Star adds: ‘Part of Cook’s plan could include Apple funding the building of a new state-of-the-art stadium that would be regarded the best in the world.’