Man Utd hold Bank of America ‘talks’ as they ‘consider selling Old Trafford naming rights’

Joe Williams
Aerial view of Man Utd stadium Old Trafford.
Aerial view of Man Utd stadium Old Trafford.

Man Utd are weighing up whether to sell the naming rights to Old Trafford as they look to raise extra revenue, according to reports.

The Red Devils are looking to find different ways of increasing their revenue streams after Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS completed a deal to buy 27.7 per cent of the Premier League club earlier this year.

Man Utd are considering a number of ways to help fund a stadium rebuild or a completely new build with The Athletic revealing their latest efforts.

‘Manchester United are considering selling the naming rights to a refurbished Old Trafford or a newly-built stadium as part-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe seeks to drive up revenues to fund the project, while the club is also deliberating over substantial ticket price rises.

‘United have also held exploratory talks with major financial institutions, including Bank of America, as they explore a series of funding options to raise the capital required to cover a potentially multi-billion pound project.

‘Manchester United declined to comment on all points raised in this report, but club sources — who spoke anonymously due to the sensitivity of the matters — insisted that while discussions have taken place, no decisions have yet been made. Bank of America did not respond to a request for comment.’

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The main concern when stadium renaming is considered by supporters is always losing the historical name altogether – but The Athletic insist that may not have to happen.

‘In the event of a refurbishment, one option may be for United to retain the name Old Trafford but seek to have an associated partner. The English national arena, for example, is called Wembley Stadium, connected by EE, for which the network provider pays a reported £10m-per year.

‘A similar approach has seen teams retain traditional names for stadiums by attaching a sponsor — such as the Spotify Camp Nou in Barcelona or cricket grounds including the Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester and the Kia Oval in London.

‘In the event of a new build, however, United are open to selling the name altogether, which they hope would command tens of millions of pounds.

‘United have not yet revealed how they intend to fund either a refurbishment or a new build, but the Glazer family have never shown an inclination to self-fund United’s ambitions while Ratcliffe’s INEOS will likely seek a mixture of public funds and private partners or debt in order to carry out the work.’

And transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has brought an update on other rumours at Man Utd with the Italian touching upon speculation surrounding Manuel Ugarte and Leny Yoro.

Romano wrote in his Caught Offside column: “Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain have had contacts to discuss several players, but from what I’m hearing they have not presented an official bid to PSG for Manuel Ugarte. United and PSG have a good relationship, and although Ugarte was one of the topics, he was not the only one.

“Still, United know that several players like Casemiro and Christian Eriksen could be on the move this summer, while they still have to decide what they want to do with Sofyan Amrabat, and so midfield is an area they’re looking at, and Ugarte is a player they appreciate.

“For now, United’s priorities are still centre-back, left-back and striker, but in midfield there could be some movement as well. Ugarte could be an option, he could be one to watch, but let’s wait and see if it turns into anything more concrete. On the centre-back issue, I can reveal that United called Lille again in the last 24-48 about Leny Yoro, to make all parties aware of their interest.

“Yoro himself is pushing for Real Madrid, while there is also interest from Liverpool and PSG, but United have made it clear that they would like to enter the story in case any deal with Real Madrid collapses. So now it’s on Real Madrid – if they want to do what it takes to close the deal, then Yoro will go there as they’re his preferred destination.”