Sports: Are Glazers selling Manchester United? Details on potential sale, investment by Sir Jim Ratcliffe

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The Glazer family has owned English football giants Manchester United since 2005.

  Are Glazers selling Manchester United? Details on potential sale, investment by Sir Jim Ratcliffe © Provided by Sporting News

Their tenure has been riddled with controversy, however, with fans often protesting their ownership of the club.

As animosity towards the Glazers rekindles following a poor start to the 2022-23 season for the Red Devils, there are signs the family may finally be open to selling in some form.

Are the Glazers selling Manchester United?

After over 15 years of ownership, various reports suggest the Glazers may be ready to relinguish some control of Manchester United.

Bloomberg reported on August 17 that preliminary discussions have been held about the Glazers possibly bringing in a new investor, who would be given a minority stake in the club.

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The Independent have subsequently claimed that the Glazers may look to sell all of their shares for around $6 billion (£4.9b).

Both reports point out that Chelsea's recent lucrative sale may tempt the Glazers to cash in soon with valuations peaking for the club despite poor on-field performances.

Sentiment surrounding the current Manchester United owners also remains quite poor with fan protests held after their recent home defeat to Brighton.

Who could buy Manchester United?

According to The Independent, there are at least three potential consortiums lining up to buy Manchester United should the Glazers decide to sell.

British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe is a leading contender to replace the Glazers having previously made a bid to buy Chelsea.

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Ratcliffe is a Manchester United supporter and already owns two football clubs in the form of OGC Nice and Lausanne-Sport.

"If the club is for sale, Jim is definitely a potential buyer," a spokesperson for Ratcliffe was quoted by The Times.

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

"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."

Businessman Michael Knighton tried to buy Man United in 1989 and is assembling another consortium to try to take over the club.

Knighton has been speaking to a handful of billionaires in recent months, including Ratcliffe, and is simply hoping a new owner can step up.

"If we can smoke the great Sir Jim out to buy Manchester United my consortium will be punching the air because we've achieved what we want to do," Knighton told ITV.

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"We will make the bid with our own consortium but, I'll tell you this, we do not have the resources available to do everything that is needed."

New York Jets owner Woody Johnson and Boston Celtics owner Steve Pagliuca both attempted to buy Chelsea earlier this year and could also be in the running to bid for the Red Devils.

Tesla owner Elon Musk joked this week that he was buying the Red Devils before later clarifying it was a joke.

Who is Jim Ratcliffe?

If Manchester United are to get a new owner, Jim Ratcliffe looms as the most likely person to takeover.

The 69-year-old was born in the Greater Manchester region and grew up supporting the Red Devils.

Ratcliffe founded chemicals company Ineos in 1998 and this has allowed him to build an estimated net worth of £12 billion ($14.4m).

He has previously declared his interest in buying Manchester United should the opportunity arise and his recent late bid for Chelsea shows he's ready to pounce.

Through Ineos, Ratcliffe has already taken over ownership of two football clubs: French side OGC Nice and Swiss team Laussane-Sport.

"We made some mistakes at Lausanne, but we are fast learners, these have been rectified and we are already seeing the benefits," Ratcliffe said after completing a deal to buy Nice in 2019.

"Clubs need to be successful off the pitch, as well as on it, and Nice will be no different.

"We have looked at a lot of clubs in the manner we look at businesses in Ineos - for value and potential - and Nice fulfils that criteria."

Outside of football, Ratcliffe also purchased the Team Sky cycling franchise in 2019 which was rebranded to Ineos Grenadiers, while Ineos have sponsorship deals with Mercedes AMG F1 and the All Blacks.

Angry Man United fans in ownership protest before EPL game .
MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Thousands of Manchester United fans angry at the direction of the club under its American owners took part in a protest ahead of the Premier League game against Liverpool on Monday. The supporters chanted against the Glazer family — “We want Glazers out” — and held banners calling for the Americans to sell United as they walked from a nearby pub to the club's storied Old Trafford stadium during the hour before kickoff of one of the biggest matches in English soccer, which United won 2-1 for its first points of the season.

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