Sir Jim Ratcliffe is looking to speed up the process around the ongoing saga that is the Manchester United takeover after reportedly offering the Glazers a “restructured” deal and in a new effort to force through the sale.
United has been controlled by the despised Americans since their £790 million takeover of the club in 2005, a period that has now lasted 18 years. However, their tenure has been marred by a series of demonstrations by supporters who are dissatisfied with how the team is being operated.
Nonetheless, the end looked to be near last November when the Glazers placed the club up for sale, with two major suitors emerging. Indeed, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the owner and creator of INEOS, has proposed a £5.5 billion plan that would allow the Glazers to keep a minority ownership in United.
Sheikh Jassim, his major opponent and, in many eyes, the best prospect to take over, has suggested a package worth roughly £6 billion. And, with wealthy Qatari supporters on his side, their ideas offer to erase United’s debts, which are estimated to be approximately £500 million, as well as invest massively in both the playing team and Old Trafford.
To that purpose, a June report suggested that the Sheikh’s offer will be crowned the winner soon, with five big-name signings expected to come at United throughout the summer months.
Ultimately, however, that did not prevail and reports stating United have since been taken off the market altogether will have irked a vast majority of their supporters.
Indeed, to sum up that anger, a frustrated Gary Neville called out the Glazers for their toxic running of the club and suggesting they were responsible for “supressing ambition” at United.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe makes new push in Man Utd takeover race
With the process now seemingly pushed back until late October, early November, fans would be forgiven for thinking the process is akin to trying to find the end of a rainbow.
However, in an effort to jolt the Glazers into a response and in a new attempt that could sideline his rival Sheikh Jassim, Bloomberg reports that Ratcliffe has now submitted a new proposal to kickstart his takeover bid.
And while the exact details of that remodelled offer are not disclosed, it is believed Ratcliffe’s new proposal will take his offer for the club nearer the £6bn mark.
To that end, it is hoped the Glazers will now have little choice but to accept and cave in to the 70-year-old’s offer.
Discussing his interest in United, a club he has supported since a boy, Sir Jim provided a rare interview to discuss the saga.
He told INEOS.TV: “The Manchester United bid would have been unthinkable two or three years ago if we hadn’t had some of the experiences – some quite difficult experiences with Lausanne and Nice.”
He went on to say: “You can’t really contemplate acquiring a brand like Manchester United and failing because the failure is just far too public and excruciating in a deal like that.”
According to sources, Ratcliffe is working with his advisors and the Raine Group, which has been selected by the Glazers to manage the buyout, to resolve any concerns about his prior bids.