Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s 25% investment in Manchester United could be announced today, according to Sky Sports.
The long-awaited investment is not the full takeover that United fans wanted, but Ratcliffe is expected to take full control of football matters and invest much-needed money into the club’s infrastructure.
There is also rumoured to be a path where he will be guaranteed the option to extend his investment to eventually achieve full control of the club.
According to Sky, Sir Jim is paying $33 a share for his stake, “representing a more than 75% premium to yesterday’s NYSE closing share price,” reporter Mark Kleinman explains.
Exclusive: Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s swoop for a 25% stake in @ManUtd, which could be announced in the early part of next week, will be priced at $33-a-share (or thereabouts), representing a more than 75% premium to yesterday’s NYSE closing share price. https://t.co/UdU8d10YR4
— Mark Kleinman (@MarkKleinmanSky) November 17, 2023
Sir Jim is expected to bring in his own people to occupy senior roles at United, with current CEO Richard Arnold’s departure already announced and others, such as director of football John Murtough, director of football operations David Harrison and technical director Darren Fletcher all likely to follow suit.
The likes of Sir Dave Brailsford, Jean-Claude Blanc (as CEO), Paul Mitchell (as sporting director) and Dougie Freedman (as operations director) have all been linked with the upcoming vacancies.
As reported here recently, Ratcliffe’s investment could mean that United will have funds injected into their transfer kitty in time for the January window, although this will also require careful negotiation around Financial Fair Play regulations.
It is also a race against time, with the Premier League expected to require 6-8 weeks to ratify the change to the club’s structure.
These are cautiously exciting times for United fans who have watched their club disintegrate both on and off the pitch under 18 years of Glazer ownership.
Ratcliffe does not have a magic wand and his own record at OGC Nice has hardly been a roaring success to date, but he is a local lad with a passion for the club and understanding of football, which immediately elevates him onto a different plane than the Americans.
He is also a self-made billionaire so his business acumen is proven, unlike the Glazers, who inherited their own fortune from their father, Malcolm.