Manchester United sale
Glazers move goalposts with new bid deadline
The battle to buy Manchester United has taken an unexpected twist with the Glazer family extending the deadline for potential buyers until the end of the week.
The move comes despite world record bids for any sporting franchise of around £5bn from Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Qatari banker Sheikh Jassim being tabled ahead of what was thought to be the deadline for the second round of final bids.
However, US financiers Raine Group, who are overseeing the process on behalf of the Glazers, have reportedly extended the deadline by a further 48 hours until the close of business in New York on Friday.
The revised deadline is no doubt designed to entice further bidders to get around the negotiating table, with Raine having suggested up to another eight groups are interested.
It could, however, jeopardise the entire process should Ratcliffe and the Qataris now walk away in frustration.
Both parties had initially offered around £4.5bn but came back with increased bids ahead of the deadline, as requested, and this late change of the goalposts will not have gone down well.
It will also prompt United fans to question whether the Glazers are actually serious about selling the club, with reports suggesting they are looking for nearer the £6bn mark.
Ineos chief Ratcliffe is understood to want to buy out the Glazers’ 69%share, while Sheikh Jassim is looking for a 100% takeover.