The Glazers are now ready to hand off Manchester United after 17 years of ownership. Who are the potential successors of the Glazers?
The Glazers’ decision to hands off the club came just hours after the club confirmed their decision to terminate Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract after the latter granted an explosive interview with veteran journalist Piers Morgan.
Ronaldo had slammed the Glazers for their poor handling of the club, alleging that the American businessmen neglected the sporting aspects of the club while pursuing the marketing aspect.
It is believed that the Glazers’ decision to sell the club is also related to the Ronaldo interview coupled with years of protests by the fans.
Now, the Glazers are ready to hand off the club and are reportedly expecting between £6billion to £8billion from bidders. As it stands, who are the Glazers’ potential successors?
FutballNews looks at six top sports investors and billionaires that may try their hand at Manchester United ownership.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe
Top on the list of potential bidders who may be interested in Manchester United ownership is Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe.
Sir Jom Ratcliffe is the owner of Ligue 1 side Nice, Swiss outfit FC Lausanne-Sport, and cycling team Ineos Grenadiers, and is said to be worth £15bn.
There were reports linking him to an interest in taking over the club in the summer, but he later rescinded such plans, saying football clubs are overvalued.
Ratcliffe wanted to buy another Premier League giant – Chelsea, but was peeped to the deal by the current owner Todd Boehly.
It is still unclear whether he will express interest again after the Glazers have confirmed their decision to sell.
The Twitter owner is also on the list of investors that may want to take over the club.
Elon Musk is currently the wealthiest person in the World, according to Forbes, with an estimated worth of £154billion. Elon Musk had earlier tweeted, “Also, I’m buying Manchester United ur welcome,” revealing his interest in the club.
Bayrak is another potential successor to the Glazers. His estimated worth is £8billion.
The Turkish multi-billion dollar investor had an interest in Chelsea and may likely switch to the Old Trafford deal after he fell out at Stamford Bridge. However, he may not be able to rival the likes of Ratcliffe and Elon Musk in a bidding war.
The UFC superstar may likely join the bid for the Old Trafford club, but he may probably do so through a consortium.
He is not a billionaire per se, but has admitted his love for the Old Trafford club, although he is a Liverpool fan.
Before Todd Boehly took over at Chelsea, McGregor was also interested in the Chelsea purchase.
He was equally interested in Liverpool’s purchase after he hinted at becoming the owner of the club one day.
Meanwhile, he will likely need to stash up funds to see the deal go through as things stand. Now that there is an opening at Old Trafford, he is expected to throw his weight into the race for ownership.
Knighton falls into the category of low-profile potential owners compared to the likes of Elon Musk and Ratcliffe.
However, being a former director at Manchester United, he could stand a chance above all other potential bidders, but he will need a partnership to raise the £6billion to £8billion price tag by the Glazers.
In 1989, Knighton had previously launched a £20million bid for Manchester United, which failed.
Knighton nearly secured the deal, but two of his backers reportedly pulled out, leaving with no option but to take a position on the board.
Meanwhile, he has not relinquished his dream of owning Manchester United and has been keen on dethroning the Glazers with a hostile bid.
Now that the doors are opened, Knighton will be expected to launch a bid again.
David Beckham is another potential successor to the Glazers. He had previously spoken about “changes to be made” at Old Trafford if the club must return to its glory days.
Beckham played for Manchester United for almost ten years and won several trophies and individual awards at the club. Hence, he would definitely be the fans’ favourite.