Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad bin Al Thani, chairman of the Qatar Islamic Bank, has confirmed the submission of a bid for a complete takeover of Manchester United.
A ‘soft’ deadline was reported to have been set for 22:00 GMT on Friday, with a Qatari contingent and British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe expected to present offers.
The Old Trafford club’s deeply unpopular owners, the Glazer family, put United up for sale in November after 18 years as majority shareholders.
The Glazers have been criticised by supporters throughout their stewardship, but it would appear their time in charge is indeed coming to an end, despite rumours suggesting some members of the family want to hold on to the club.
While Ratcliffe, owner of chemicals company INEOS, confirmed interest last month, Al Thani is the first to publicly declare the submission of a legitimate offer.
A widely reported statement read: “Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani today [Friday] confirmed his submission of a bid for 100 per cent of Manchester United Football Club.
“The bid plans to return the club to its former glories both on and off the pitch, and – above all – will seek to place the fans at the heart of Manchester United Football Club once more.
“The bid will be completely debt free via Sheikh Jassim’s Nine Two Foundation, which will look to invest in the football teams, the training centre, the stadium and wider infrastructure, the fan experience and the communities the club supports.
“The vision of the bid is for Manchester United Football Club to be renowned for footballing excellence, and regarded as the greatest football club in the world. More details of the bid will be released, when appropriate, if and when the bid process develops.”
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