EXCLUSIVE: Qatar’s Sheikh Jassim submits new bid for Manchester United – and sets a deadline of THIS FRIDAY for final negotiations – in the hope of beating Sir Jim Ratcliffe in their £6bn takeover battle
- Qatari billionaire Sheikh Jassim is looking to acquire full control of United
- But he faces competition from Ineos chief and Red Devils supporter Ratcliffe
- Sheikh Jassim has submitted a new offer directly to the club’s Glazer owners
The Qatari Sheikh who wants to buy Manchester United has submitted a further bid – and has set a deadline of Friday.
In a major power move to seize control of the Premier League giants, Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad al-Thani has submitted the offer directly to the club’s owners, the Glazer family, and Raine Group, the American bankers managing the long-running saga.
Mail Sport understands the Sheikh has also told those involved that he will engage up until Friday. After then, the bid will stand, but there will be no further negotiations.
The bid is the fifth made by Sheikh Jassim since Mail Sport revealed details of the first in February. It remains for total control of the club and is thought to include a significant further sum for investment on infrastructure and recruitment. No preferred bidder has yet been chosen since a deadline of April 28 for final bids.
Sheikh Jassim’s competitor, British petrochemicals billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, had been thought to be edging ahead in the process. It now remains to be seen if the latest, high-stakes move is enough to persuade the Glazers to part with the club.
Qatari billionaire Sheikh Jassim has submitted a new bid to take over at Manchester United
Sheikh Jassim wants to buy 100 per cent of United and fully take over the club from the Glazers
But he faces competition from Ineos chief and United supporter Sir Jim Ratcliffe (pictured)
They are understood to value United at £6bn and the offer, while improved, does not meet that figure, which many view as outlandish.
Ratcliffe’s offer is for a majority of the club and has the potential for the Glazers to remain involved for a certain time period.
There has been a growing frustration at how long the sale is taking, especially given the imminent opening of the transfer window. The process originally started in November of last year.
It is understood that the need to strengthen Erik ten Hag’s squad has played a major role in the Sheikh’s latest and final move. He is keen to complete the takeover and arm the Dutch manager with significant funds ahead of the new season.
Takeover talk has dragged on at United ever since the Glazers announced they were open to selling the club back in November.
Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim emerged as the two sole suitors after launching offers for the club, widely considered one of the most prestigious on the planet.
Yet according to The Financial Times, Ratcliffe – Britain’s richest man – has been attempting to structure a deal that would see United’s unpopular Glazer owners remain on board.
His proposed takeover – unlike that of Sheikh Jassim – is understood to be for a majority of shares at Old Trafford as opposed to 100 per cent ownership of United.
However, Sheikh Jassim has now tested the Glazers’ resolve by launching his take-it-or-leave-it offer.
Avram Glazer was in attendance at last weekend’s FA Cup final, where United were beaten 2-1 by arch-rivals Manchester City.
Takeover talk has dragged on at Old Trafford ever since the Glazers announced they were open to a sale back in November
As he departed Wembley on Saturday night, the US tycoon ignored a question from Sky on the long-running takeover saga.
Avram was asked: ‘Are you definitely selling Manchester United? Are you going to accept the Jim Ratcliffe or Qatari bid?
‘Why are you not speaking to the fans? Don’t the fans deserve to know what’s happening with the takeover?’
Despite clearly hearing the reporter, Glazer marched straight past him while refusing to make eye contact or acknowledge the question.
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