Ratcliffe Man Utd deal approved by Premier League


Sir Jim Ratcliffe (left) has made frequent visits to Old Trafford and the club’s training ground since his deal was agreed

British billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s deal to buy a 25% stake in Manchester United has been approved by the Premier League.

The deal, worth about $1.3bn (£1.03bn), is still subject to Football Association approval.

Owners the Glazer family will retain a majority stake in the club but Ratcliffe’s Ineos Group will take control of football operations.

Premier League approval is contingent on the deal being completed.

“The Premier League now awaits confirmation of the transaction’s completion,” the league said in a statement, while confirming Ratcliffe, 71, has also signed the owners’ charter.

The deal is the first to be agreed under the Premier League’s updated owners’ and directors’ test, which was approved by member clubs in March 2023 and includes a review by an independent oversight panel.

Ratcliffe’s deal was agreed on Christmas Eve and also includes $300m (£236m) for future investment into the club’s Old Trafford stadium.

The businessman has agreed to buy 25% of the club’s class B shares, largely held by the Glazer family, who own 69% of the club, and contain almost all the voting rights, and up to 25% of its class A shares, which are listed on the New York Stock Market. The shares are worth $33 each.

An update to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Monday evening confirmed that the deadline for holders of class A shares to tender them for sale has been extended from Wednesday until 23:59pm on Friday.

So far 36.7% of class A shares have been tendered, already above the 25% Ratcliffe has agreed to buy.

Taking on sporting control at the club means Ineos will oversee the men’s and women’s football operations and academies.

They will also get two seats on the Manchester United PLC and Manchester United Football Club boards.

Ratcliffe has already made several visits to Old Trafford and the club’s training ground while he waits for the deal to receive final approval.

BBC Sport understands that process is proceeding positively towards completion.

The Glazer family bought Manchester United for £790m in 2005.

In November 2022 the American family stated they were considering selling in order to “explore strategic alternatives”..

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