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Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Tuesday May 21, 2024
Tuesday May 21, 2024

The knight before Christmas: Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s £1.3bn takeover of Manchester United confirmed

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Billionaire injects £237m to ignite new era and football operations overhaul

In a festive twist, Manchester United has officially confirmed Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s 25% takeover of the club, marking a £1.3 billion acquisition from the Glazer family. The British billionaire, chairman of INEOS, will infuse £237 million into the club and undertake football operations management.

Ratcliffe, a lifelong supporter of the club, originally sought majority ownership but settled for a minority stake. The transaction includes acquiring 25% of Manchester United’s Class B shares, up to 25% of Class A shares, and an additional $300 million for future investment into Old Trafford.

A joint statement from Manchester United plc outlined the agreement, stating, “INEOS has accepted a request by the board to be delegated responsibility for the management of the club’s football operations, including men’s and women’s football operations and academies. This strategic move also grants two seats on both the Manchester United PLC board and Manchester United Football Club boards.”

Expressing his enthusiasm, Ratcliffe stated, “As a local boy and a lifelong supporter of the club, I am very pleased that we have been able to agree a deal with the Manchester United board that delegates us management responsibility of the football operations of the club.”

Ratcliffe emphasized the untapped potential of the club’s commercial success in recent times, aiming to create a world-class football operation. The infusion of global knowledge, expertise, and funds from INEOS Sport aims to drive improvement, acknowledging the challenges ahead.

The Glazers, who initially put the club up for sale a year ago, will receive £650 million from the sale of their Class B shares. Ratcliffe’s investment is set to initiate an overhaul of the club’s transfer department, with key figures such as Sir David Brailsford joining the initiative.

While Ratcliffe plans to invest £245 million into infrastructure improvements, there are reportedly no plans for a new stadium. A significant portion of the budget is earmarked for developing the Carrington training ground.

As Manchester United navigates a challenging season on the pitch, the Ratcliffe-led era is poised to usher in changes, addressing issues both on and off the field.

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