Sheikh Jassim is ready to increase his offer for Man Utd in a ‘final bid’ to take over the Premier League club, according to reports.
April 28 was the deadline for any final bids to buy the Red Devils from the Glazer family with Qatar’s Sheikh Jassim and INEOS founder Sir Jim Ratcliffe both making new bids in time.
The Glazers have faced fury from Man Utd fans since their leveraged takeover in 2005 and the family announced in November that they were exploring strategic alternatives to enhance the club’s growth, including the possibility of a full sale.
To the frustration of some of the fanbase, there has been speculation that Ratcliffe’s offer for the club could include an option for some of the Glazer family to hold onto their shares in the club.
One report last week claimed that the Glazers had selected Ratcliffe as their ‘preferred bidder’ after weighing up the offers from a third round of bids.
The report insisted that ‘Old Trafford insiders have indicated the Glazers would prefer to sell majority control to Ratcliffe’s Ineos Sport rather than flogging the whole club to Sheikh Jassim.’
But now Saudi Sports Media journalist Nawaf Oga has written on Twitter that, despite the deadline having already passed, ‘Qatar is preparing to raise a final offer to buy Manchester United for about 6 billion pounds’.
Widespread reports have claimed previously that £6bn is the Glazer family’s valuation of the club but it remains to be seen if another offer could be enough to make them think again.
Avram Glazer rarely visits Old Trafford to watch the Red Devils but the Man Utd co-owner was at Wembley last month to watch Erik ten Hag’s side against Brighton in their FA Cup semi-final.
And he was in attendance again on Sunday as the Man Utd women lost the FA Cup final to Chelsea 1-o after Sam Kerr’s matchwinner 22 minutes from time.
On leaving the stadium, Glazer was asked about the takeover by a journalist, who said: “How long is the sale going to take?” But Glazer remained silent and carried on exiting the ground.
Gary Neville has explained why he is desperate to see the Glazers sell Man Utd as soon as possible, he told CBS Sports: “I don’t want private equity into an English football club, I’ll be really clear. I don’t think it works. I think football is about emotion.
“Believe it or not, in Manchester, I have a partnership with a US private equity fund and in other sectors of life, I love international investment.
“But I think in football clubs, you can’t go into it purely because you want to see a return. When it comes to the current bids, at this moment in time, I think Jim Ratcliffe’s bid has its merits, the Qatari bid has its own merits.
“My main concern at this moment in time is that the Glazer family sell and that they remove themselves from the club. They’ll make a lot of money, well done for that. They’ve proved to be very astute business people but now it’s time to hand over control because the club has deteriorated under their ownership.”