Man Utd confirms takeover approach

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The Independent Online

Manchester United confirmed today it was the subject of takeover interest after announcing it had received a "preliminary approach".

Manchester United confirmed today it was the subject of takeover interest after announcing it had received a "preliminary approach".

The Old Trafford-based Premiership club did not disclose the identity of the potential bidder, although reports at the weekend said US-based multi-millionaire Malcolm Glazer was interested in taking control of the business.

Manchester United said the approach contained a "number of significant conditions" and that it was seeking clarification of the proposal.

Mr Glazer - owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers gridiron franchise - has a 19.2% stake in United and is the second largest shareholder behind Irish racing tycoons John Magnier and JP McManus, who hold 28.9% through their Cubic Expression company.

Reports at the weekend quoted banker Mehmet Dalman, who has helped Mr Glazer buy United shares in the past, as saying that the Glazer family were interested in having a major involvement at United.

In March, Mr Glazer moved to quash weeks of speculation by announcing that he had no current intention of making an offer for the football club.

Manchester United shares lifted almost 4% following the announcement, although the price of 267p was still below its peak of 279.5p earlier this year. The current price values the club at around £700 million.

Today's statement said: "The board of Manchester United notes the recent press speculation. It confirms that it has received a preliminary approach regarding a possible offer for the company. This approach contains a number of significant conditions.

"The company is seeking clarification of this proposal and at this stage it is unclear whether any offer will be made. The board will make a further announcement if appropriate."

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