Manchester United takeover news and rumours have dominated the football consciousness globally ever since the Glazers announced they were 'exploring opportunities'. Many thought this was code for selling up, which depending on the reports you read is or isn't the case.
But now we've hit the back end of September and you'd have to say we've had less and less clarity over the situation and it has become more muddled. Here, we attempt to weed through the news and rumours and provide a lowdown of the Man Utd takeover saga so far. Here we go.
It all started on Tuesday November 22 last year at 9:30pm of all times. United released a statement explaining that they were 'commencing a process to explore strategic alternatives for the club'. They then further explained what that actually means.
"The process is designed to enhance the club's future growth, with the ultimate goal of positioning the club to capitalize on opportunities both on the pitch and commercially," the United statement read. "As part of this process, the Board will consider all strategic alternatives, including new investment into the club, a sale, or other transactions involving the Company."
Huge rise in value amid bidding
At the time of the aforementioned announcement, United were worth £3.75billion but subsequently saw that price rise by 17%. United put in a second round of bidding for the club, which saw both British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe and Qatari Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani provide offers. American firm Elliott Investment Management also attempted to acquire a minority stake.
Demands not met
It was reported that the highest bid for United came in at £4.5 billion, which was some distance away from the Glazers' valuation in the region of £6bn. The Financial Times reported that Sheikh Jassim had made an improved £5 billion offer in the third round of bidding which by last month of this year was still on the table.
Fears of no sale and drop in share price
Then September 6th rolled around and United suffered the biggest drop in share price as they fell by more than 18% on the New York Stock Exchange, per the BBC. By this point the Glazers' valuation had risen to £10bn, with the drop in price coming after the Mail on Sunday reported that no potential buyer had matched the club's asking price.
BBC reported at the time: "Tuesday's share price fall wiped around $700m (£556m) off Manchester United's stock market valuation. It is now valued at about $3.2bn. The Glazer family bought Manchester United in 2005 for $790m."
Latest Man Utd takeover news
The two aforementioned bidders have been 'put off' by the club's poor start to the season, per a report by The Times. The Glazers were still said to be 'mulling over' the two offers. Both offers are thought to be over £5bn.