Deutsche Bank cuts Glazer ties as United fans besiege offices

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The Independent Online

Deutsche Bank rapidly distanced itself from any links to Malcolm Glazer yesterday after being bombarded with abusive emails, phone calls and faxes from Manchester United supporters opposed to any takeover of their club by the American businessman.

Deutsche Bank rapidly distanced itself from any links to Malcolm Glazer yesterday after being bombarded with abusive emails, phone calls and faxes from Manchester United supporters opposed to any takeover of their club by the American businessman.

The deluge began after The Independent revealed that Glazer's camp had held talks with the German bank about backing his bid. It is understood that a preliminary discussion took place in London on Monday but further talks were quickly ruled out by yesterday morning. The finances, as well as the vehemence of the opposition to the bank, merely for being linked to Glazer, were factors.

Analysts are divided over whether Glazer will find any bank to back him. Some say that the fact that JP Morgan - the bankers who dumped him last week - were prepared to lend him money is evidence he will eventually find funds. The fact that no bank appears to want to be linked to him demonstrates the size of his task.

Deutsche released a statement yesterday afternoon, saying: "Deutsche Bank is not in any talks with Malcolm Glazer." The careful wording stopped short of denying that talks had taken place the day before. A spokeswoman said the bank would not comment on any past talks or future talks, only that there were no talks ongoing.

Glazer approached Deutsche after being dumped by JP Morgan, who had been unimpressed by his belligerence towards United. Despite initially agreeing to lend Glazer around £500m towards an £800m bid, JP Morgan ditched him when his hostile attitude led to three United directors being voted off the board last week.

Deutsche's day of bombardment by United fans was triggered by internet postings of contact addresses. The bank's branches around the world were targeted, with the London office receiving large amounts of "warning off" calls, emails, black paper faxes (which jam the system) and unsolicited pizza deliveries. By mid-morning, the bank's chief executive had personally been in touch with the influential Supporters United fans' group to say Deutsche would not be dealing with Glazer.

"This will serve as a warning to any bank considering backing Glazer about the depth of feeling amongst United fans and about the speed of the reaction they can expect," Oliver Houston, SU's spokesman, said last night.

Glazer is considering his next move.

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