Sheikh Jassim bid still on table as Manchester United takeover tests patience
By Jamie Gardner, PA Chief Sports Reporter
Sheikh Jassim’s fifth and final bid to buy Manchester United will remain on the table beyond Friday but the Qatari’s patience with the takeover process is wearing thin.
The Sheikh and his Nine Two Foundation, which is seeking to buy 100 per cent of the club, are understood to feel that by Friday United’s owners, the Glazer family, and the Raine banking group which is conducting the sale process will have had ample time to seek or request clarification and revision of the bid, and will therefore no longer engage with them on it beyond this date.
Some observers have interpreted the submission of two additional bids from Sheikh Jassim as an indication that the rival offer from Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Ineos is preferred by the Glazers.
However, sources close to the Qatari say he is simply keen to bring the matter to a swift conclusion with a crucial summer transfer window for United coming up.
The fifth and final bid was issued earlier this week, and Sheikh Jassim considers it an enormous premium on the current share price of the club, both now and at any stage of the club’s recent share price.
Ratcliffe is understood to have made an improved offer on April 28. It has been reported that his offer enables Avram and Joel Glazer to retain a 20 per cent stake in the club, something the Ineos camp has not confirmed.
The Glazers are reported to value the club at £6billion.
This is a crunch period on and off the field for United, who won the Carabao Cup, finished third in the Premier League and lost Saturday’s FA Cup final in Erik ten Hag’s first season in charge.
Co-owner Avram Glazer was at Wembley for Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester City and ignored questions about the takeover as he left through the interview area.
Asked about the potential takeover and summer improvements, United boss Ten Hag said: “I think in this moment I don’t want to discuss that.
“It’s about finalising the season. We have to be quiet, analyse the season, go into the depth, then set the right conclusions and then take action.”