Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Saudi takeover of Manchester United dismissed

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 17 Feb 2019

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Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s rumoured interest in buying Manchester United is false according to a denial issued by one of his ministers in Saudi Arabia.

A report by The Sun claimed Bin Salman was readying a £3.8billion takeover bid – a deal that would give the Glazer family a huge £2.2bn profit on the club they controversially acquired for £790million in 2005.

A tweet from Turki Al-Shabanah, the minister for Saudi media, claimed a meeting had taken place between United representatives and the Gulf state’s royal investment fund, but only to discuss a potential sponsorship tie-up.

“The news that Prince Mohammed bin Salman desires to acquire Manchester United is completely untrue news,” Al-Shabanah’s tweet read.

“The fact of the matter is that the club held a meeting with the public investment fund to discuss an advertisement sponsorship project.

“The Fund listened to the proposals as [it would] any other”.

In October 2017, United agreed a strategic partnership in Saudi Arabia with the country’s General Sports Authority (GSA).

The Red Devils also have a commercial partnership with Saudi Telecom and, at the time of the GSA deal, United’s group managing director Richard Arnold said: “The club has a long-standing relationship with Saudi Arabia and has over five million passionate fans in the region.

“Having the chance to help shape the football industry in the Kingdom is a great honour and it is something where we believe we can make a big difference.”

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