Qatar Holding deny Manchester United takeover bid

Qatar Holding today joined Manchester United in quashing rumours of a takeover with a source close to the Gulf Arab state's sovereign wealth fund saying no talks had been held with the English soccer club.

Premier League leaders United have repeatedly said the Old Trafford club was not for sale but its high-yield bonds [MNU.UL] rose to near record highs on Tuesday on speculation of a deal.

"Qatar Holding is not and has never been in discussions to buy Manchester United football club. There is no truth to the rumours," said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity.

While United have been building a four-point lead in the table as they seek a record 19th league title, off the pitch they have been the subject of media reports saying their American owners, the Glazers, are on the verge of selling up.

The owners are unpopular among many fans with some donning green and gold scarves on match days in protest at the debt the Glazers have burdened the club with.

The colours are those of the Newton Heath works team, United's predecessors, and those wearing them are disillusioned by what they see as exploitation of the club by foreign owners who have raised ticket prices and loaded United with debt.

The Glazers, who bought the club in 2005 for about 790 million pounds ($1.28 billion), surprised fans in November when a source said they had agreed to pay off a 220 million pounds payment-in-kind (PIK) loan from funds outside the club.

A month earlier they had ensured United kept hold of England striker, Wayne Rooney, who had turned the spotlight on the Americans by saying he wanted to leave Old Trafford because the club lacked clout in the transfer market.

Rooney ended up signing a five-year contract after saying he had been convinced to stay because "the management, coaching staff, board and owners are totally committed to making sure United maintains its proud winning history".

Despite what could be seen as moves by the Glazers to court favour with the fans, speculation has been rife that they plan to sell and rumours have centred on Qatar Holding as the buyer.

In January, United denied they had received an approach from Qatar Holding to buy the club [ID:nLDE70M05X] and last week a spokeswoman said "The club is not for sale".

Manchester already has Arab owners in town as neighbouring City are owned by Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al-Nahyan who has made them the world's richest club and spent hundreds of millions of pounds on players.

The tiny Gulf Arab state of Qatar, the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, in December won the right to host the 2022 World Cup finals.

Suggested Topics
Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders