Manchester United player turned pundit Gary Neville has said the club’s owners need to engage properly with fans over the next couple of months to ensure a smooth exit from Old Trafford.
Neville spoke out on Sky Sports after the Glazers revealed they were ‘exploring’ options to sell the club on Tuesday night. Their tenure has seen years of fan protests over their ownership and how the club is being run, and they announced they were assessing their options a few hours after Cristiano Ronaldo’s exit from United was confirmed. The forward had been critical of the Glazers in his controversial interview with Piers Morgan the previous week.
Now former United defender Neville has spoken out to say the Glazers need to ‘do this right’ and involve fans in the process to avoid history repeating itself. Speaking on Sky Sports, Neville said: “I think what Manchester United fans need to see is a manifesto from the new owners - Manchester United can’t be handing over to an owner that basically screams against what the club stands for or what the club wants.
“So there are manifesto pledges that, I think, are really important – like the fan voice, the fan experience, and maybe even positions for fans on the board... The reality of it is, if the Glazers want to do this right, they have to make sure the club is going to a party whereby the fans don’t believe they are being lumped with another owner they do not like.”
And Neville reckons there is no time like the present to set the ball rolling. He added: “It’s a big moment now - the Glazer family will never get a great exit from Manchester United, but they could have a more pleasant exit if they do it right. Over the next couple of months, I’d like to see them engage properly with the fans about who is going to take over the club.”
Names being linked to the takeover of United including billionaire businessman Sir Jim Ratcliffe. United is valued at around £5billion.