Sheikh Jassim has already decided on fourth Man Utd bid as developments unfold

Ratcliffe leaves Old Trafford after Man Utd takeover talks

Manchester United currently look set to be sold to Sir Jim Ratcliffe. It emerged late on Wednesday night the INEOS chief was the Glazers’ ‘preferred bidder’, having submitted three offers for the club so far. And while many supporters would love to see Sheikh Jassim buy the Red Devils, it’s already been reported he won’t be making a fourth bid for the club.

The Sun claimed on Wednesday night that Ratcliffe was the frontrunner to buy United.

The British billionaire, who previously missed out on purchasing Chelsea to Todd Boehly last year, is the Glazers’ ‘preferred bidder’ due to his willingness to pay over £5billion and let the Americans stay on in a reduced capacity.

It is a blow for many United fans, with a large chunk of supporters crying out for Sheikh Jassim to own the club instead.

The Qatari figure has the wealth to own any football club in the world but it seems he won’t bow to the Glazers’ demands at a time when the Red Devils are on the market.

And it was reported at the end of last month that Sheikh Jassim had already decided his third offer would be his last, with no fourth bid incoming.

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Throughout the process, the Middle-Eastern billionaire has made it clear he wants to own 100 per cent of United.

Ratcliffe, however, is looking to buy the majority share – with brothers Joel and Avram Glazer poised to keep a 20 per cent stake combined.

As developments unfold, Sheikh Jassim seems to be further and further away from buying the team he claims to love the most.

And while the saga isn’t over just yet, it’s Ratcliffe who is leading the charge as he looks to seize power at Old Trafford this summer.

US-based Raine Group, who have been overseeing the takeover process, are set to name the winning bid in just a matter of days.

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That will be a welcome relief for manager Erik ten Hag who, speaking recently, admitted he had no idea what his budget will be for the summer transfer window.

United are eyeing the likes of Harry Kane, Victor Osimhen and Romeo Lavia as they look to challenge for the Premier League title next term.

And Ten Hag said: “I don’t know.

“The only thing I know is that Man United is one of the biggest clubs in the world.

“But you need funds to construct squads because the level from your players decides if you are successful or not.

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“High-level players cost a lot of money.”

When quizzed on if he’d like to know as soon as possible, the 53-year-old continued: “Yeah, it’s clear what I want, but it’s not up to me.

“It’s about others in this club. I’m focusing on improving the squad and the team development.”

As for Ratcliffe, Leicester legend Kasper Schmeichel recently endorsed the British billionaire and insisted he’d be able to improve United.

“They’ve been successful, not just in business, but in every other sporting venture they’ve thrown their investment at,” said the Dane.

“I think with Manchester United particularly, Jim is a big fan of the club and that speaks a lot to fans.

“He’s someone coming in who cares deeply about the club.

“From my own experience at Nice, he’s a man who is present, he comes to games, a guy that’s knowledgable about football and who has a vast knowledge about performance in general.

“He has people like Dave Brailsford working for him, who again, are present.”

United are next in action against Wolves on Saturday (3pm).

They won 1-0 in the reverse fixture at Molineux earlier in the campaign, with Marcus Rashford scoring the only goal of the game that day.

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