Glazers exploring potential sale | Stay on topic and post respectfully | Do not post dodgy tweet sources

Vapor trail

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I don't want "investors", I'm so sick of it especially when they own so many clubs in various sports

Can't think of any good American owners in football. Perhaps the success of running a NBA / American football / Baseball team is drastically different to the business model behind a football club. Even Todd Boehly for me personally has shown all the warning signs of a wrongful approach.
 

Messier1994

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Its quite funny to think how Manchester United used to be owned by local small business owners like Louis Edwards, who got the team winning the European Cup and built the stadium from the ground, and now we’re debating which Oil Rich Nation can possibly afford us.
Haven’t Pep like spent more on his defense than the yearly defense budget of all NATO countries excluding the US?
 

Messier1994

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I don’t know what to make of this, but it’s definitely shows that it’s not ‘business as usual’ at Man Utd head quarters.

Manchester United plc (NYSE: Man Utd), one of the most popular and successful sports teams in the world, playing one of the most popular spectator sports, today announces that it will report results for the first quarter fiscal 2023 period ended 30 September 2022 on Thursday, 8 December 2022 at 4:15 PM EST.
https://ir.manutd.com/press-releases.aspx

What is unusual with this? Manchester United plc is a “foreign private issues” (as I understand it, not an expert on US capital market laws) which means that it must not file quarterly reports within the 35 day limit that applies to all US issuers. So the company will not breach the SEC rules for announcing its Q1 report as late as two months and 8 days after the quarter ended.

But this seemed to be really late to me, so I went back and checked. In 2020, we filed the Q1 PL and BS on 12th and 16th November and in 2021 on the 17th and 18th November.

This is a pretty big delay and since the Man Utd plc produces quarterly reports, they must be published as swift as possible in any event in accordance with the NYSE manual.

Why is a quarterly report delayed? By far the most common reason is that there is concerns regarding some item in the report.

In this case, it may just be that they want some external advisor to review it an extra time to ensure everything is in order. But at the same time, it’s the profit and loss and the balance sheet — should be very straight forward and in line with the same practices they have used for years.

My bet is that there is people at the HQ turning everything upside down doing a due diligence on the club. This takes up a ton of internal resources, which have resulted in that they just haven’t been able to meet the deadlines. I don’t know, just a guess. But it’s a bit unusual.
 

croadyman

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I have a mate who works in Dubai (for a big insurance company so not anyone who should know anything really) who told me months ago he'd heard Dubai were in talks to buy us. There was no noise that we were even for sale at that stage, let alone about them, so I laughed him out of it.

Got a fairly smug message from him this week. He's convinced it'll happen.
You get the vibe that Dubai is Abu Dhabi's poorer younger brother
 

Bluelion7

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Can't think of any good American owners in football. Perhaps the success of running a NBA / American football / Baseball team is drastically different to the business model behind a football club. Even Todd Boehly for me personally has shown all the warning signs of a wrongful approach.
Boehly is the ONLY American in Clearlake. You are talking about a group of 7 billionaires pooling liquid cash together for passion projects for sport, and most of them are European. The primary financial muscle is Swiss. Boehly himself has spent a large portion of his like since Kings College overseas.

I say this to point the “American Owner” thing is very deceptive. You had Possibly one of the cheapest, shiftiest owners in American sport, owner of the Losingest franchise in NFL history trick you into selling them your club. So I get where the skepticism comes from.

The Fenway group is a good executive group, and well organized, but the “moneyball” approach to overusing analytics to get around larger investment just … may not be a long term strategy for European football. The cash necessary to compete on that stage is ridiculous.

American sports either have hard caps to spending, such ridiculous luxury taxes and penalty tiers that raw outspending isn’t feasible, and drafts designed to evenly distribute players. It’s just totally different.

Baseball is the only possible exception to that, even though it does have a draft. You can spend other teams into the ground if you want to commit to it. The problem is, aside from Clearlake ( who are not American) , your other exposure to a baseball owner is a group designed to be the model for anti-overspending. I can’t think of another international consortium in baseball.

Then you could get a Kroenke. Arsenal were in bad hands with Stan, who is not a biological Walton, and a real estate goon like the Glazers… BUT Stans son seems to be taking over and seems to genuinely care about Arsenal and the Sport. And they have near endless money. They once tried to buy a second team in a league, were told it wasn’t allowed, and called up a cousin and asked them to buy it for them. HUGE money, and, seemingly in the son, commitment.

So if the Raine group step in I don’t think you should worry if there are Americans involved. The question should be the complete makeup of the group, the motivation, the plan, and real available funds.

And if they have to talk about “debt financing” they probably would t even make the list for consideration by Raine for United ownership. The days of people who need “financing” (unless they are c financing themselves through bank ownership) for the very top teams is ending.
 

Slysi17

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Dubai is a small fry compared to Abu Dhabi. I think they’ve been bailed out a couple of times. There was talks about another one in 2020.
Do your research. Investment corporation of Dubai have subsidaries. Therefore Investment Corporation of Dubai is the parent company which is worth 300 odd billion. One of the subsidaries was the one that was in trouble and not the actual parent company Investment Corporation of Dubai. The subsidariy in question is Dubai Holding. People need to get their facts straight.

https://www.reuters.com/article/dubai-debt-insight-int-idUSKBN2A9118
 

Slysi17

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Did you skip over “compared to Abu Dhabi” in my post?
Did you skip over the fact it was Investment Corporation of Dubai's subsidary Dubai Holdings that was having financial difficulites and not the parent company Investment Corporation of Dubai which is worth 300 odd billion.
 

TheRedHearted

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Can't think of any good American owners in football. Perhaps the success of running a NBA / American football / Baseball team is drastically different to the business model behind a football club. Even Todd Boehly for me personally has shown all the warning signs of a wrongful approach.
Well you’ve got the college game before the NBA and football and in many cases baseball to develop players with huge media coverage. Meaning playing football in college is the same size stadium as the NFL, plus the coverage its sort of limited ie a good sample size for recruitment. So picking players may be easier, also considering there’s little recruitment over seas in different leagues. But otherwise I don’t see how its much different, gm in football, baseball and basketball finds players to sign and the coach is a lot less influential in baseball for sure. Idk it may just be the lack of knowledge of the game
 

elmo

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I have been obsessively trying to find info on who the potential buyer can be the last day or two. Mapped out the legal team at Latham & Watkins doing the transaction, looked at social media if any selfies could be found, gone through transaction records, checked many reports.

But I just can't get a feel either way. Nothing feel quite right. You don't get the feeling that there is symetrics between the report, one thing point in one direction, then the next thing point in another direction.

*Why is Dubai mentioned? Because they are the one country who don't own a football team. Glazers traveled to Dubai. Like its definitely not the worst guess, but at the same time -- Chelsea was for sale a while back. Why didn't they try to buy Chelsea if they wanted to get a top football club? The Saudi's (another fund than the Newcastle owners) at least made a big offer for Chelsea, but they were cut on a technically.

The PL already cleared one Saudi fund from not being identical to the state. With that precedent -- another Saudi fund "should" not be prevented from buying another PL team. Like why would they? The PL finds that one fund is not run by the Saudi state. Then they find that another fund is not run by the Saudi state. But these two funds cannot own a PL team each -- because both are run by the Saudi state or what? Makes no sense. The Saudi media fund at least made a bid for Chelsea, which Dubai didn't.

*Jimmy Radcliff? Checks a lot of boxes. But not really the biggest one. An investment in Manchester United of a total of like 8-9bn can be seen as attractive -- for someone that has so much money that they don't know how to spend it, and is willing to roll the dice and certainly don't mind the additional power and influence owning Manchester United means. For Radcliff, the little I know of him, it would be all about "fan value". Is that enough to go way above and beyond on the purchase price of an already extremely expensive toy? I don't quite get the feeling that it adds up to be honest.

*US Consortium? Like, there is no thing as a "US consortium" in business. Oh here comes another US consortium, they often make these type of investments. Except in football -- where it undoubtedly has somewhat been a thing. But if you look at big Merger & Acquisitions -- its downright rare that a consortium is involved. It simply means that the transaction is too big for one party -- but that there still is logic in making the transaction with the help of several bidders. There is no logic behind expecting a buyer to be a "consortium" -- since its the exception, not the rule. If anything, it just means that someone is punching a bit above its weight class. Perhaps there is a logic for it in sport team ownerships, but its not that obvious. For me consortium's make much more sense if its infrastructure or real estate that is sold. Something really really basic. Like lets say a power grid is sold, it doesn't matter much if you own 75% or 25% of it. Its worth the same, you aren't worried about what management will do with the grid. You just send out the bills.

Is it private equity? Venture capital? A hedge fund?

Like it can of course be more than one buyer -- but its just a very unclear term from my POV.

*I for a while got the feeling that it could be a US betting company (MGM / Ceasars). As I am sure most know, the US online betting market have opened up rapidly the last years. Naturally, existing entities in the US is trying to take their slice of it and the established European betting companies are of course investing a ton to also get a foothold there. But its kind of an unfair fight, because the European companies have a home market that isn't challenged at all by the US companies coming out of the woodwork, and the fight is solely on the US companies back yard. They can of course buy existing betting companies in Europe -- which they also have done. But MGM or Ceasars buying United -- it is a different kind of statement. Raine Group have done business with these companies lately.

But I just don't think they are strong enough. Draftkings have a market cap of like 10bn, the bigger US alternatives perhaps 14bn. They invest tremendous amounts in advertising -- and its just not profitable business right now.

*While I certainly can't rule out any of the most talked about alternatives above, I just can't shake the feeling that the buyer could be a surprise option.

Jim O'Neill gave an interview on Bloomberg just the other day. He tried to buy United what 10 years ago with a 1.2bn offer. He trashed the current asking price. His group (the Red Knight) definitely is very connected. Its full of ex bosses from Goldman and other big investment banks. If Jim O'Neill doesn't have a clue about who is buying United -- then its kept close to the chest. If he does know it, what he said could be interesting.

And he said one thing that caught my attention, first basically that he would never take a proposal with the current ask to his companions, he then added the interesting part which was something like a strong word of caution to whomever buys United, that it will not be a walk in the park to own the Club. There will be a lot of drama attached to it. And like with the attention it gets -- it won't be a walk in the park to own it. Drama at the club could reflect on certain type of owners. When something like the Mason Greenwood incident happens -- the owners could be asked about it. But only, if the new owners are responsible and will be expected to act like it. For some kind of hedge fund, they are untouchable. Faceless. How much have the enormous protests impacted the Glazers? Not much. Its not like Abu Dabi gets exposed if its exposed that City had cheated the FFP -- nobody cares, nobody expects anything else from them.

It doesn't have to mean anything, but to me it did sound like Jim O'Neill wanted to scare someone away or at least criticize a buyer for not thinking it through. Who would this be a thing for? Most certainly someone like Apple Inc. Like Tim Cook don't want an event meant to be about presenting iPhone 15 be stormed by angry fans or UK journalists asking why United haven't bought a new GK despite lost the first 3 games of the season. Like, you get what I mean. There will be protests if OT is to be replaced by a new arena. Whatever. The attention everything United gets -- its massive. Even if Apple is talked about all the time, its not on the headlines of big papers often.

I don't know, but listening to Jim O'Neill, I just did not get the impression that United would be bought by either faceless money/owners or scruple free people if you get what I mean. The above could also apply to Jim Radcliff -- but not more so than to Jim himself (unless he wants Radcliff to join the Red Knights).

I wouldn't rule out an industrial buyer. I know many would, I respect their arguments for sure. It certainly don't have to be Apple. Could be Tencent or Alibaba or Amazon. It was when I saw this interview that I started to consider the Betting industry, but like I said above, they are too small. Jim ONeill's warning would of course have made sense in relation to MGM, Ceasars and co too.

*The last alternative I would not rule out is that -- a large political risk -- is seen on the Horizon. Something that would result in clubs being worth a lot less in 10-20 years time. And hence everyone just puts up their clubs for sale right now while they still can get premium pay.
US consortiums are a thing and not just for football. Just look at all the NBA teams and they’re mainly owned by consortiums with just a figurehead acting as the owner.
 

AneRu

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You get the vibe that Dubai is Abu Dhabi's poorer younger brother
What we need in terms of investment after the takeover is in the region of £2bn over a 3 to 5 year period, £10 isn't something that should put a dent on a $300bn fund so they don't need to be as rich as their cousins but just rich enough to fund the stadium and the initial team rebuilding - a big part of which has already been started by the Glazers.

The Glazers are much poorer than Abu Dhabi but they have managed to stay toe to toe with City over a ten year period in terms of spending. Football isnt that expensive for the levels these guys play at and bar the stadium United can pretty much fund its football operations, imagine what it's income could be if we got our act right in terms of recruitment and coaching (already done the latter).

I think we are too big for the PL and FA to allow a ME takeover because this has the potential to turn the league into a dirty version of the Bundesliga especially if the Saudis find a way to own us and Newcastle.
 

therealtboy

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If Forbes value the club at less than 4 billlion then why would anyone pay 6?
Club is worth more than its paper value. The intangibles that come with a club like this can justify a 6 billion sale.
 

devilish

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I don't want "investors", I'm so sick of it especially when they own so many clubs in various sports

I don't know a lot about these guys but they seem to invest heavily on the infrastructure and on the team. I'd rather have them then Sir Jimmy Brexit, the tax dodger who bought Nice, he had barely invested anything on them and who puts mates on top of the pyramid so they'll run it. Inoes even got a Swiss team relegated under their watch.
 

Champ

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I don't know a lot about these guys but they seem to invest heavily on the infrastructure and on the team. I'd rather have them then Sir Jimmy Brexit, the tax dodger who bought Nice, he had barely invested anything on them and who puts mates on top of the pyramid so they'll run it. Inoes even got a Swiss team relegated under their watch.
INEOs took over a struggling team who nearly got relegated the season before the takeover, who then got relegated and swiftly promoted once the funds had been allocated.

I know you have a proper beef with Ratcliffe, but you certainly are blinkered in your viewpoint.

HB sports want Liverpool not United by all accounts, they don't have a fantastic net worth as a lot of their funds are tied up in assets rather than cash and they also don't seem to be overly interested in their sports 'franchises' overperforming.

Also do this group still own share in Crystal Palace?

From someone that had a bad word about Ratcliffes season ticket at Chelsea I'd have thought this would be a bad sign for you?
 

LordSpud

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My bet is that there is people at the HQ turning everything upside down doing a due diligence on the club. This takes up a ton of internal resources, which have resulted in that they just haven’t been able to meet the deadlines. I don’t know, just a guess. But it’s a bit unusual.
There's always been something fishy with the goings on regarding the balance sheet and the fact the club was always more inclined to put players on longer contracts or let them leave for free rather than ever sell them. It was always put down as just sheer incompetence but now if they are trying to sell it and maybe not everything was above board... well it makes you wonder.
 
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I don't know a lot about these guys but they seem to invest heavily on the infrastructure and on the team. I'd rather have them then Sir Jimmy Brexit, the tax dodger who bought Nice, he had barely invested anything on them and who puts mates on top of the pyramid so they'll run it. Inoes even got a Swiss team relegated under their watch.
Brailsford was knighted for his contributions to sport, contributions that began long before he started working with INEOS.
It’s more than a bit disingenuous to suggest he’s simply a “mate” popped up on top of the pyramid, he’s the sporting director of INEOS, not Nice, a role he had long before any takeover of Nice and one in which he has proven successful in with a variety of sports.

The Swiss side has spent much of the past two decades in the second tier.
 

phelans shorts

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There's always been something fishy with the goings on regarding the balance sheet and the fact the club was always more inclined to put players on longer contracts or let them leave for free rather than ever sell them. It was always put down as just sheer incompetence but now if they are trying to sell it and maybe not everything was above board... well it makes you wonder.
There’s nothing fishy at all about that method. You may disagree with it but nothing about it looks dodgy at all.
 

golden_blunder

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Its quite funny to think how Manchester United used to be owned by local small business owners like Louis Edwards, who got the team winning the European Cup and built the stadium from the ground, and now we’re debating which Oil Rich Nation can possibly afford us.
1988 the club was going to get bought by Knighton for 30m tops. 34 years later it’s worth 5bn+
 

devilish

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Brailsford was knighted for his contributions to sport, contributions that began long before he started working with INEOS.
It’s more than a bit disingenuous to suggest he’s simply a “mate” popped up on top of the pyramid, he’s the sporting director of INEOS, not Nice, a role he had long before any takeover of Nice and one in which he has proven successful in with a variety of sports.

The Swiss side has spent much of the past two decades in the second tier.
What football experience does Brailsford has to be director of football?
 

devilish

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INEOs took over a struggling team who nearly got relegated the season before the takeover, who then got relegated and swiftly promoted once the funds had been allocated.

I know you have a proper beef with Ratcliffe, but you certainly are blinkered in your viewpoint.

HB sports want Liverpool not United by all accounts, they don't have a fantastic net worth as a lot of their funds are tied up in assets rather than cash and they also don't seem to be overly interested in their sports 'franchises' overperforming.

Also do this group still own share in Crystal Palace?

From someone that had a bad word about Ratcliffes season ticket at Chelsea I'd have thought this would be a bad sign for you?
I can't think of one rich guy being linked to us that has any form of morals. Which is why I find Ratcliffe's stance as hypocritical. We're talking of a guy who claim to love his country while he lives in tax free Monaco. A man who threatens to close shop if EU laws are implemented that would make it more difficult for his company to pollute and who bid for Chelsea while claiming to be a United supporter. But that's not all. Everything around him (football related of course) stinks of amateur. He appointed his brother as Nice CEO and he appointed Brailsford as a director of sports. The guy has no idea about football and was caught into a huge scandal during his cycling years. Ratcliffe then launched a very late bid for Chelsea were he urged Raine not to discount it simply because they are British bla bla bla. Do you really want this guy as Manchester United's owner? I don't.

The US option is the least preferred option and quite honestly I don't know if these guys have the money to buy us. However they seem to be very professional in what they do and aren't afraid in injecting some serious money into the club. That seem a better option to me then the amateur guy whose only argument seem to be that he's local.
 

devilish

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He isn’t director of football is he?

Is he not the INEOS director of sports, covering several disciplines?

Florent Ghisolfi is the sports director at Nice.
He is so involved at Nice that he's living in a camper there. If Moyes and Rangnick were ridiculed by our players then imagine what would happen if the bicycle guy comes to give lectures about football (or ethics) especially one with a huge dark cloud over his head.

https://www.fourfourtwo.com/feature...ing-director-has-ended-up-living-in-a-caravan
 
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He is so involved at Nice that he's living in a camper there. If Moyes and Rangnick were ridiculed by our players then imagine what would happen if the bicycle guy comes to give lectures about football (or ethics) especially one with a huge dark cloud over his head.

https://www.fourfourtwo.com/feature...ing-director-has-ended-up-living-in-a-caravan
Murtough currently does that job so….

I’d say a guy with shit loads of sporting success across several disciplines behind him is probably more worthy of listening to than Everton’s former sports scientist.

But that’s besides the point, he’s not a “mate”, he wasn’t “put at the top of the pyramid”, he’s a guy knighted for sporting success that is the INEOS sporting director, and had been a very successful one at that.
 

TheReligion

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He is so involved at Nice that he's living in a camper there. If Moyes and Rangnick were ridiculed by our players then imagine what would happen if the bicycle guy comes to give lectures about football (or ethics) especially one with a huge dark cloud over his head.

https://www.fourfourtwo.com/feature...ing-director-has-ended-up-living-in-a-caravan
So he’s not the Director of Football at Nice then?

So much misinformation being spread.

Thanks for clearing it up @Regulus Arcturus Black
 

Tarrou

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Hell of a premium. For what though?
Prestige I guess. We're talking oil money here, right? So I'd be thinking a situation where 2+ oil states bid against each other.

I doubt "for profit" guys are willing to pay such premiums, but sometimes people just make bad decisions
 

devilish

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Murtough currently does that job so….

I’d say a guy with shit loads of sporting success across several disciplines behind him is probably more worthy of listening to than Everton’s former sports scientist.

But that’s besides the point, he’s not a “mate”, he wasn’t “put at the top of the pyramid”, he’s a guy knighted for sporting success that is the INEOS sporting director, and had been a very successful one at that.
I don't like Murtough and you can't find hundreds of my posts where i criticised him. But at least he is a football person with no scandals surrounding him
 

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Hell of a premium. For what though?
For a billionaire investor with a large portfolio then first and foremost massive increase in asset value, also that an item like Manchester United has shown to rarely be available on the market. The way Premier League is going then you perhaps can see the biggest brand in the league being worth about £15bn, if not more, in 15 years. The bubble could also collapse of course, but maybe they see it as a low risk.

Secondary, it also could be about prestige of owning said biggest brand in the biggest sports in your portfolio.
 
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I don't like Murtough and you can't find hundreds of my posts where i criticised him. But at least he is a football person with no scandals surrounding him
What makes him a “football person”?

His background is sports science. Because he’s worked in football for a while? Well that makes Roman Abromovich a football person then, or I guess Ed Woodward is now a football person too, and at what point does Brailsford suddenly “become” a football person? Is it 2 years? 4 years?

He heads the sporting director role at INEOS, that’s cycling, motor racing, running, sailing, rugby, football. How does someone get to be a “everything person” :confused:

He’s extremely extremely qualified for his current position, he’s not a “mate put at the top of a pyramid”.
Would Murtough be qualified for that position at INEOS? Would Leonardo? Would Begiristain? Cause what the feck do they know about all those other disciplines?

It’s a daft argument, Nice have a football director, INEOS have a Sporting Director which to me sounds a whole lot better of a setup than some finance numpty doing the INEOS role.
 
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Champ

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I can't think of one rich guy being linked to us that has any form of morals. Which is why I find Ratcliffe's stance as hypocritical. We're talking of a guy who claim to love his country while he lives in tax free Monaco. A man who threatens to close shop if EU laws are implemented that would make it more difficult for his company to pollute and who bid for Chelsea while claiming to be a United supporter. But that's not all. Everything around him (football related of course) stinks of amateur. He appointed his brother as Nice CEO and he appointed Brailsford as a director of sports. The guy has no idea about football and was caught into a huge scandal during his cycling years. Ratcliffe then launched a very late bid for Chelsea were he urged Raine not to discount it simply because they are British bla bla bla. Do you really want this guy as Manchester United's owner? I don't.

The US option is the least preferred option and quite honestly I don't know if these guys have the money to buy us. However they seem to be very professional in what they do and aren't afraid in injecting some serious money into the club. That seem a better option to me then the amateur guy whose only argument seem to be that he's local.
Or the guy that already has two football clubs, is looking to run them clubs as one entity to enable to flagship club to proper and get better deals for good young players?

Or the American investors who are in it purely for financial gain, who already own shares in Crystal Palace, who have flirted with both Chelsea and Liverpool, who actually are not cash rich at all in comparison to what Ratcliffe could offer?

Seems you have blinkers on and are unable to actually see other potential bids with the same tinted spectacles you use when viewing Ratcliffe.