Man Utd takeover latest: Seething bidder slams ‘farcical’ Glazers as fans lead megastore protest
and live on Freeview channel 276
One of the first businessmen to bid for Manchester United earlier this year has labelled the club's takeover process as the 'most farcical in history'.
Thomas Zilliacus is the owner of investment firm XXI Century Capital and was involved in early rounds of bidding. The Finnish businessman hoped to purchase Manchester United and issue low-priced shares to its supporters.
Zilliacus then withdrew from the process in April after refusing to partake in the third round of bidding.
The drawn-out takeover process is still ongoing with Red Devils fans leading protests against The Glazers for delays which look sure to push any completion of a deal past the beginning of the upcoming Premier League season.
British tycoon Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Qatari Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani remain the frontrunners to complete a takeover with the Sheikh billionaire submitting a last-gasp fifth bid for the Manchester club.
That offer is still being considered by Raine, the banking group overseeing the takeover deal, and Zilliacus has blasted the handling of the deal.
Taking to Twitter, he said: "How many more months shall we read about United takeover news? This is already the most farcical club takeover in history. Never seen anyone so unable to make a decision.”
Sheikh Jassim's final bid of £5.2 billion and a pledge to invest a further £800 million is believed to have been accepted by the Glazers, but the BBC claims that exclusivity has still not been granted to the Qatari. Should this be the case, the Glazers may still be in talks with INEOS owner Sir Jim over a counter bid.
The lack of takeover progress is widely believed to have hampered Erik ten Hag's progress in the summer transfer window and today Manchester United fans protested against the situation at Old Trafford.
A group of fans holding anti-Glazer flags congregated outside the club shop this morning as the side's new kit was launched at the megastore. Protestors claimed the shop had to temporarily close due to the demonstration but has now found a way to let fans wanting to get their hands on the new kit - premiered by rapper Aitch at Glastonbury Festival last weekend - into the store.