Manchester United takeover: Investors linked to Qatari royal family expected to make formal bid by Friday deadline

Qatari investors linked to the country’s royal family expected to make formal bid to buy Manchester United; Glazer family announced in November they are open to selling the club or seek new investors; Raine Group have asked interested parties to submit bids by Friday

Investors linked to the Qatari royal family are likely to make a bid for Manchester United before the end of this week.

A definite decision has not been made yet but Sky Sports News has been told a bid is likely.

Raine Group have asked interested parties to submit their bids by the soft deadline of this Friday. The bids will be one paragraph with the amount and proof of funds.

The Qatari bid has nothing to do with Paris Saint-Germain owners Qatar Sports Investments or PSG president and QSI chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

The Qatari investors were contacted late last year to see if they would be interested in buying the club. Although they are interested, they will not overpay for the club. United owners the Glazer family are believed to be looking for a sale price of at least £5b.

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Qatar has made no secret of the fact it wants to invest in more sports to build on what it sees as the success of the World Cup. Raine Group are expected to select two or three preferred bidders from the offers.

At least four serious bids are expected for Manchester United next week. The others are are likely to be from Sir Jim Ratcliffe, USA and Saudi Arabia.

Ratcliffe is working with JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs. JP Morgan worked with the Glazers when they bought United in a £790m leveraged buyout in 2005. Ed Woodward was at JP Morgan at the time and worked on the deal.

The club’s share price has doubled since the Glazers effectively put the club up for sale in November. United have lost £230m over past three years.

JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs are prepared to provide financing to cover United’s existing £660m debt if Ratcliffe decides to bid for the club.

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