Manchester United’s controversial owners the Glazer family have finally decided to listen to offers for the club after 17 years of controversial ownership.
The Florida-based owners bought United in 2005 in a deal which set them back £790m. But the club are without a Premier League title since 2013 when Sir Alex Ferguson left and their reign has been dogged by a series of fan protests.
Indeed, their ownership has been severely criticised over the years, with the club’s on-field performances not matched by their profitbaility off it.
And on the day the club tore up the contract of controversial superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, Sky News can reveal that the Glazers are finally ready to sell up.
The news channel reveals that the Glazers are preparing to formally announce their intentions to examine potential sources of outside investments in the first instance.
However, it is believed it could lead to a full-blown auction of arguably the world’s most-famous club.
Sources have told Sky News that investment bankers are being instructed by United’s owners to advise on the sale process. That could lead to a part or full-scale sale of the football club.
And they state an official statement confirming their intentions is due to arrive in the coming days.
That announcement is likely to lead to one almight scramble to buy United off the Glazers, which will likely see their controversial reign ultimately coming to an end.
Man Utd for sale: Glazers asking price revealed
The club has fallen off the pace in the decade since Ferguson’s retirement. In that time they have won the FA Cup, the League Cup and the Europa League.
However, the failure to win the Premier League – or even come close – in that time, together with a failure to either reach or make an impact in the Champions League, is a source of great frustration to supporters.
Worse still, they have had to sit back and watch as fierce rivals Liverpool and Manchester City have dominated the English game.
Indeed, the news that the club is for sale will likely come as a huge relief to supporters. And they will hope that fresh investment – or better yet, ownership – will lead to a revival in their fortunes.
Chelsea were sold for £2.5bn earlier this year to a group fronted by new Blues chairman Todd Boehly.
But the sale of United is likely to blow all other club purchases out of the water. Per Sky News, the sale of the Red Devils could reach as much as £9bn. That will land the Glazer family – who also own NFL side Tampa Bay Buncaneers – a huge profit on their initial investment.