Manchester United could be the latest English Premier League side to have new owners after announcing it would “look into strategic alternatives for the club”.
The Glazer family have been the majority owner of Manchester United since 2005, when Malcolm Glazer took over the team after being a minority owner. The Glazers are also owners of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
“As part of this process, the Board will consider all strategic options, including new investment in the club, sale or other transactions involving the Company,” the team said in a statement. “This will include evaluating several initiatives to strengthen the club, including stadium and infrastructure renovations, and expanding the club’s global commercial operations, each in the context of enhancing the long-term success of men’s, women’s and academy teams and benefiting fans and other stakeholders. parties.”
The family’s ownership of Manchester United is controversial among Red Devils fans. The takeover bid was largely funded by loans secured by the team’s assets. High interest rates on the loans meant significant annual debt repayments after the club had been known to be debt-free for decades. The Glazers even offered the team’s shares on the New York Stock Exchange as a refinance.
Malcolm Glazer died in 2014 and his sons Avram and Joel Glazer are currently co-chairs of the team.
“Manchester United’s strength is built on the passion and loyalty of our global community of 1.1 billion fans and followers,” the Glaser brothers said in a statement. careful evaluation of strategic alternatives. We will evaluate all options to ensure that we provide the best possible service to our supporters and that Manchester United make the most of the significant growth opportunities available to the club today and into the future. Throughout this process, we will be fully focused on serving the interests of our fans, shareholders and various stakeholders.”
Manchester United position themselves as the most famous club in the world and have a significant commercial presence around the world. If the team is sold, its purchase price is likely to far exceed the $3.2 billion Todd Boley paid for Chelsea from Roman Abramovich earlier this year after the Russian oligarch was forced to sell the team due to sanctions imposed by in connection with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The news that the team could be sold comes hours after United announced they have terminated star striker Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract. The 37-year-old Portugal captain has been at odds with the club since he returned to United ahead of the 2021/22 season and has been given limited playing time this season.
United’s announcement also comes just weeks after Fenway Sports Group confirmed it was considering selling Liverpool. FSG bought Liverpool in 2010 and could have made an incredible return on their $350 million investment had they sold the team.