The Man Utd Takeover: In a move that could potentially reshape the landscape of one of the world’s most iconic football clubs, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the billionaire owner of INEOS, is proposing a groundbreaking takeover of Manchester United. If his £1.3 billion deal for a 25 percent stake in the Premier League giants goes through, it would grant Ratcliffe a significant say in both the football and commercial operations of the club, marking a pivotal moment in the history of Manchester United.
Ratcliffe’s Vision for Manchester United:
Sir Jim Ratcliffe has not only set his sights on a significant share of the club but also on a fundamental reconfiguration of the club’s governance structure. The proposal outlines the creation of a three-person football committee, which would include himself, Joel Glazer, and Sir Dave Brailsford. This committee would be entrusted with overseeing the football operations at Old Trafford, allowing Ratcliffe to play a crucial role in shaping the club’s future.
Control of Football Operations:
One of the most significant aspects of Ratcliffe’s proposal is his bid for control over the football operations at Manchester United. This development means that key decisions related to the club’s footballing strategy, player recruitment, and other football-related matters would be in the hands of the new committee. With Ratcliffe’s vast resources and expertise, his involvement in these decisions could potentially be a game-changer for the club.
Influence Over Commercial Matters:
In addition to the influence over football operations, Ratcliffe’s deal would also give him a say in the club’s commercial activities, which have been traditionally controlled by the Glazer family. This move could pave the way for a more diversified approach to the club’s business operations, potentially opening up new revenue streams and branding opportunities.
The Glazer Connection:
The inclusion of Joel Glazer on the proposed committee is an intriguing development. It reflects the willingness of the Glazer family, who have faced significant criticism from Manchester United fans in the past, to share power and collaborate with Ratcliffe. This move could be seen as an effort to align the interests of the Glazer family with those of the fans, who have long called for more transparency and involvement in the club’s decision-making.
Ratcliffe’s Commitment to Manchester United:
Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s interest in Manchester United is not solely a business venture; it is a testament to his passion for the sport and his desire to see the club return to its former glory. His involvement could inject a fresh perspective into the club’s operations and provide the resources needed to compete at the highest level.
Impact on the January Transfer Window:
While this potential takeover has generated significant excitement, it is not expected to lead to a flurry of activity in the January transfer window. Manchester United’s current transfer strategy is unlikely to undergo a sudden shift, as the club continues to focus on long-term planning and building a sustainable future.
Timeline process for the Man Utd takeover:
November 22, 2022:
The Glazers publicly express their willingness to sell the club, indicating they are open to various options, including new investment.
February 17, 2023:
Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani present competing bids for the takeover of Manchester United, with Sheikh Jassim seeking to acquire 100 percent ownership of the club.
February 18, 2023:
US hedge fund Elliott Management enters the fray by submitting a proposal for investment in Manchester United.
February 28, 2023:
The Glazers appear divided on the sale, as the initial bids fall short of their £6 billion valuation.
March 5, 2023:
Sheikh Jassim and Sir Jim Ratcliffe, along with an undisclosed third bidder, progress to the next stage of the takeover process.
March 10, 2023:
Elliott Management advances to the second stage of the Manchester United sale process.
March 16 & 17, 2023:
The Qatari group and Sir Jim Ratcliffe hold meetings with the Raine Group at Old Trafford, gaining access to detailed financial information. Sheikh Jassim opts not to participate in these meetings.
March 22, 2023:
The Raine Group extends the deadline for second-round bids, following requests from Sheikh Jassim and Ratcliffe. Elliott Management had already submitted an offer for a minority stake before the soft deadline.
March 23, 2023:
Sir Jim Ratcliffe submits his second bid.
March 24, 2023:
Sheikh Jassim submits his second bid.
April 11, 2023:
The Glazers move the sale process into a third round, requesting that interested parties submit their final offers by the end of April.
April 28, 2023:
Sheikh Jassim presents a world-record bid. Ratcliffe also submits his offer before the deadline.
May 16, 2023: Sheikh Jassim makes a fourth bid, nearly reaching £5 billion. INEOS, on the other hand, proposes a higher valuation for Manchester United but offers only a partial stake, allowing the Glazers to retain a 20 percent share.
June 7, 2023:
Sheikh Jassim improved his bid with a fifth offer.
October 14, 2023:
Sheikh Jassim withdrew from the takeover process, marking a significant development in the ongoing negotiations.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s proposal for a Manchester United takeover, with a three-person football committee and a 25% ownership stake, represents a significant moment in the club’s history. If approved, this deal could pave the way for a new era at Old Trafford, blending the expertise and resources of Ratcliffe, the Glazer family, and Sir Dave Brailsford. As Manchester United looks to maintain its status as one of the world’s most iconic football clubs, the outcome of this takeover could have far-reaching implications for the future of the Red Devils.