The Independent

Ratcliffe to bid for United

Billionair­e is turning down the chance to buy Liverpool


Jim Ratcliffe will bid to buy Manchester United after the Glazer’s formally put the club up for sale, although there remains a considerab­le difference between valuations.

The Ineos owner’s August comments are now seen as the start of a long negotiatio­n process. While the Glazers want £6bn, and the Raine bank mandated to oversee any sale is expected to push

for the highest price in a manner they did with Chelsea, Ratcliffe is seeking to buy it for under £5bn.

The petrochemi­cals billionair­e already owns Nice, and The Independen­t can reveal that he has already been offered the chance to buy Liverpool in the last few months but turned it down in order to get the running of the French club right. Mostly influencin­g that was also his childhood support of United, and Mr Ratcliffe now believes the opportunit­y is “too tempting and unique” to not engage in the process.

He is expected to have competitio­n from at least two other parties, one who also attempted to buy Chelsea, but that list is expected to grow as potential buyers now announce their intentions.

The Independen­t has similarly been told that it was Fenway Sports Group that greatly influenced the Glazers’s surprising decision to confirm the club was for sale.

The widespread belief in football investment circles is that United have actually been for sale for months, as revealed by The Independen­t back in August.

A series of sources insist the Glazers felt they had to go public, as they are now effectivel­y competing with Liverpool for a limited pool of potential buyers.

While the processes could take months, and even up to a year, those with knowledge of the situation say it is currently a “dead heat”. It is also anticipate­d that they will take buyers away from each other.

That appears to have already happened with Mr Ratcliffe, who has rejected the opportunit­y to buy Liverpool, but is now intent on seeing whether a long-held dream to own United can finally come off.

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 ?? (Getty) ?? The owners of Manchester United have fina ll y admitted publ ic ly that the club is for sale
(Getty) The owners of Manchester United have fina ll y admitted publ ic ly that the club is for sale
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