The Glazer family have confirmed that they will “evaluate all options” as they are officially open to selling Manchester United.
The Glazers first invested in United in 2003 and they became the club’s majority stakeholders in 2005.
The value of the club at that time is understood to have been around £790m.
Their relationship with the club’s supporters has declined in recent years. A lot of investment has gone into signing new players, but very little has been done to modernise Old Trafford or the club’s training ground.
The Glazer family were also heavily involved in the planned formation of the European Super League.
The introduction of this competition was called off following significant opposition from fans, the media and ex-players.
The United owner’s involvement with the ESL led to more frequent fan protests with the majority of the club’s supporters keen to see an end to the Glazer regime.
They may be about to get their wish as Sky News revealed on Tuesday evening that one option the Glazer family have is to push for a ‘full-blown auction’.
Sky News have been informed that investment bankers have been asked to ‘advise the owners on the process’.
The report later states: ‘United’s valuation in a sale would inevitably exceed the roughly $2.15bn market capitalisation implied by its share price during Tuesday’s trading session on the New York Stock Exchange.
‘Reports in recent months have speculated that any transaction would need to value the club at anywhere between £5bn and £9bn to persuade the owners to sell.’
Avram and Joel Glazer later announced that they will “evaluate all options” to ensure that they “best serve the fans”.
“The strength of Manchester United rests on the passion and loyalty of our global community of 1.1 billion fans and followers,” the statement from the Glazers read.
“As we seek to continue building on the Club’s history of success, the Board has authorized a thorough evaluation of strategic alternatives.
“We will evaluate all options to ensure that we best serve our fans and that Manchester United maximizes the significant growth opportunities available to the Club today and in the future.
“Throughout this process, we will remain fully focused on serving the best interests of our fans, shareholders, and various stakeholders.”
Sir Jim Ratcliffe will naturally be discussed as a potential buyer. Back in August, it was confirmed by his spokesperson that he is interested in buying Man Utd from the Glazers.
“If something like this was possible, we would be interested in talking with a view to long-term ownership,” Ratcliffe’s spokesperson told The Times.
“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.”
It is a busy news day at United as hours before this report emerged, it was confirmed that Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract has been terminated by mutual consent.
This comes after the 37-year-old burned his bridges at Man Utd after firing shots at Erik ten Hag, the Glazers, Ralf Rangnick, Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney during an interview with Piers Morgan.