Sheikh Jassim of Qatar has returned with a last offer to buy Manchester United ahead of Sir Jim Ratcliffe at the eleventh hour.
- Ratcliffe seemed to be the favored bidder.
- Sheikh Jassim, on the other hand, returns to the table.
- The takeover of Manchester United continues.
WHAT OCCURED? The Daily Mail reports that Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani has returned to the table with a final, take it or leave it to offer to buy 100% of Manchester United in a desperate bid to divert the Glazers’ attention away from Sir Jim Ratcliffe.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: After last month’s last round of bidding, Ratcliffe emerged as the favored bidder with his offer of a majority takeover, but Sheikh Jassim has now filed an upgraded final offer.
That offer, however, is still expected to be valued lower than Ratcliffe’s, as was the case following the alleged third and final round of offers last month. While the Lancashire-born billionaire has not bid for 100% ownership in the club, his offer for a majority stake, which would allow the Glazers to stay before being bought out altogether, places a higher value on United.
ADDITIONALLY, in addition to seeking to buy 100% of the club, Sheikh Jassim’s offer seeks to wipe clean the £536 million ($669.2 million) of debt leveraged against United. If Ratcliffe’s offer is accepted, it is believed that his petrochemicals company INEOS will take on and manage the debt.
Despite last week’s assurance that a preferred bidder would be definitely identified, talks with all parties are thought to be ongoing.
WHAT COMES NEXT FOR MAN UTD? According to the source, it remains to be seen whether Ratcliffe will try to increase his offer further. With the summer transfer window quickly approaching with both their men’s and women’s teams in difficult positions in terms of incoming and exiting players, the pressure is now squarely on United to complete their takeover before the conclusion of the season.