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18th Aug 2022

British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe confirms he wants to buy Man United

Callum Boyle

Ratcliffe is interested in buying Man United from the Glazers

British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe has confirmed he is interested in buying a minority stake in Manchester United, with a view to taking full ownership of the club if the Glazer family want new investment.

A spokesperson on behalf of Ratcliffe confirmed the news to The Timessaying: “If the club is for sale, Jim is definitely a potential buyer.”

It follows after reports on Wednesday that the Glazer family could be open to selling a minority stake in the club, which coincides with United’s poor start to the season.

Jim Ratcliffe Man United

Ratcliffe’s spokesperson added that should he purchase a minority stake, it would be on the basis that he would take full control at a later date.

“If something like this was possible, we would be interested in talking with a view to long-term ownership,” they added.

The Glazer family have been strongly criticised by United fans for their handling of the club, with a complete overhaul required at the club on and off the pitch.

Ratcliffe, who is a life-long United fan, wants to oversee those changes, which include the modernisation of the club’s famous stadium, Old Trafford. The billionaire has a net worth of $28.2bn and was named Britain’s second richest person in 2020. He is the chairman and CEO of chemicals of Ineos. Ratcliffe owns the French club OGC Nice.

“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,” the spokesperson continued.

The Manchester United Supporters’ Trust (M.U.S.T) released a statement on Wednesday night, insisting that any change of ownership must be the “right change.”

They said: “Speculation is mounting about a potential change of ownership or new investors at Manchester United. Whilst supporters have called for change, of course this has to be the right change.

“Any prospective new owner or investor has to be committed to the culture, ethos and best traditions of the club. They have to be willing to invest to restore United to former glories, and that investment must be real new money spent on the playing side and the stadium.

“Finally any new ownership structure must embed supporters, including a degree of fan share ownership, in their operating model. These are the criteria supporters will judge any bid on. We are open to dialogue with any bidder, and look forward to any such discussions.”

Large-scale protests are being planned by fans for United’s game against rivals Liverpool on August 22 as supporters hope that this can be the beginning of the end under the Glazer family.

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