Man Utd takeover meetings finally set as ‘bidders learn deadline’

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Manchester United suitors will learn the next steps of the takeover process imminently after the Raine Group received the first wave of indicative offers in February. And a deadline has reportedly been set for a sale to be completed if the Glazer family are to relinquish control at Old Trafford.

Raine, the US merchant bank tasked with overseeing the sale of United, received indicative bids for majority and minority investment on February 17.

Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani and INEOS chief Sir Jim Ratcliffe publicly pledged their commitment to buying the club.

But with neither understood to have offered above £4.5billion, there will have to be at least another round of bidding if the Glazers are to sanction a sale.

According to the Guardian, bidders will soon learn the next steps now that Raine have sat down with United’s Tampa-based owners.

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The report claims Sheikh Jassim and Ratcliffe will hold meetings with United within the next fortnight when the requirements of a successful bid should be clarified.

However, if there is no resolution before the end of the season, it’s claimed a takeover would be in jeopardy.

Potential new owners would want to implement a new transfer policy for the summer window, indicating a preference to wrap up the process before June.

If there is no sign that the Glazers’ hefty £6bn valuation will be met before then, though, they could opt for minority investment to fund the redevelopment of Old Trafford and the club’s Carrington training ground.


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That would be an unpopular outcome among the United fanbase, many of whom have protested against the Glazer family’s regime since their controversial 2005 takeover.

The report adds that Sheikh Jassim and Ratcliffe are intent on progressing their bids, which may lead to formal offers being made.

It has been claimed elsewhere that due to the promise of clearing the club’s built-up debt under the Glazers, a Qatari bid through the newly-formed Nine Two Foundation would unlikely be matched by INEOS.

The scheduled showdown talks could be face-to-face in London or Manchester, with representatives of Sheikh Jassim and Ratcliffe joining members of the United hierarchy and Raine.

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