Dr Who joins fight to exterminate Glazer bid

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The Independent Football

Christopher Eccleston yesterday became the latest high-profile Manchester United supporter to provide money and public backing to the fans' campaign against the mooted takeover by Malcolm Glazer.

Christopher Eccleston yesterday became the latest high-profile Manchester United supporter to provide money and public backing to the fans' campaign against the mooted takeover by Malcolm Glazer.

The actor, who is currently appearing on television as Dr Who, has pledged £10,000 to a proposed Investment Trust, which is being launched by the Shareholders United group. The aim of the trust, which has provisional backing of £100m from a Japanese bank, Nomura, is to build a "blocking stake" in United to stop any single investor taking control.

On its own, Eccleston's cash will be far from sufficient to exterminate the threat posed by Glazer, who might be more worried if he were a Dalek. But SU is also in talks with a City fund manager, who is "in control of a significant shareholding in the plc", with a view to possibly supporting the Investment Trust. SU also hopes that other celebrity fans will come forward with money.

"We urge all those with United's best interests at heart to act, and act now," SU's spokesman, Oliver Houston, said.

Glazer is still pondering exactly when to make a formal 300p-per-share bid for the club. The Takeover Panel has set a 17 May deadline. The club's largest shareholders, John Magnier and J P McManus, remain key to Glazer's plans, which can only succeed if they sell to him.

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