Manchester United: Sheikh Jassim withdraws from takeover process


Fans have protested against the Glazer family’s continued ownership of the club.

Sheikh Jassim has withdrawn from the process to buy Manchester United, the PA news agency understands.

Fans have protested against the Glazer family since their controversial leveraged takeover in 2005 and last November’s announcement of a strategic review brought hope of change.

The possibility of a full sale was mentioned and Sheikh Jassim became the first bidder to publicly confirm he had made an offer for the Old Trafford giants.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe swiftly followed but the interminable potential takeover process has rumbled on as the demanding Glazer family dragged their heels.

It is now understood that, following further discussions, a frustrated Sheikh Jassim has withdrawn from the process to buy the Premier League club.

The Qatari banker informed the United owners of his decision in the last few days.

Sheikh Jassim’s team announced in February that he had submitted a bid to buy 100 per cent of the club, promising a completely debt-free takeover via his Nine Two Foundation. The bid is understood to have eventually reached around double the current 3.2billion dollars (£2.6bn) market valuation of the Premier League club.

An additional 1.7bn dollars (£1.4bn) is believed to have been pledged for infrastructure projects.

Earlier this month it was reported that rival bidder Ratcliffe was considering changing his offer and buying a minority stake in United. It was reported he may seek a stake in the region of 25 per cent as part of a proposal to try to bring the drawn-out sale process to an end, having initially wanted to complete a majority takeover.

If the Glazers accepted this new reported offer, it would see the American family still retain majority control of the club.

United sit 10th in the Premier League after a difficult start to the season for Erik ten Hag’s team.

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