We undoubtedly live in an era of misinformation. It's possible to post statistics that are just plainly false or taken way out of context on the Internet/social media and have them spread like wildfire. It's also possible to read an article about the same subject by two respected journalists who have totally contrasting opinions and arguments. On RedCafe, we see a clear divide at the moment. It seems that the majority of posters, myself included, are strongly against the Glazer ownership of Manchester United, for reasons I will outline later. However, for reasons I currently cannot comprehend, there are still posters out there who defend the Glazers. Now, as I like to think I am person of reasonable mind who can be convinced by logical arguments, I am slightly confused. There are some clearly intelligent, passionate United fans on this forum who argue that the Glazers are good owners are/or have been a net positive for the club. Currently, I cannot fathom one single reason why anybody would want to defend these people, but since there exist posters in vast numbers who still do, it got me thinking.....am I wrong about the Glazers? I do not want this to turn into another thread of mindless squabbling - we have plenty of those! What I would like is for posters to present some logically solid and factual arguments supporting the Glazer ownership of the club. As I have already clearly stated, I am sceptical. My view, for clarity and fairness, are thus; Funding The Glazers HAVE spent money. It is impossible to argue that they haven't. In real terms, we are one of the biggest spending clubs in football. However, I would still respond to this by saying; A) This is the result of years of under-investment during SAFs final 8-10yrs followed by a period of panic-buying shortly after TV revenue increased by 66%, leading to huge transfer inflation. This is evidenced, in my mind, by the fact that between 2005-2010, Utd had a positive net spend. This 'coincides' exactly with the period whereby the riskiest, highest-interest loans (PIK) where leveraged on the club. Furthermore, if the Glazers had any foresight and where the great businessmen we are told they are - why did they not foresee that every single PL club in England becoming roughly 50% richer overnight would cause a huge increase in transfer fees? That's basic Yr.10 Economics. We are now faced with having to replace the majority of our squad in a bull market. B) The Glazers haven't spent any of their OWN money. They have spent the bare minimum of the clubs operating profits they feel necessary to maintain Top 4 status. Again, this can be evidenced by the fact that we have only really seen a large upturn in our net spending after we have missed out on Top 4. Some posters claim that we didn't spend under SAF because we didn't need to...I am sorry but this argument just does not wash with me - that's not how ANY top organisation should operate in ANY industry. It was obvious to United fans everywhere that the quality of players coming IN to the club was significantly lower than the players who one by one retired or left under SAF/the Glazers. By the time Moyes took over, Paul Scholes at 37 had just come out of retirement to help us win one final title, Rio & Vidic where both crippled by serious injuries, Evra was entering his 30's, as where the likes of Carrick, Fletcher and RvP. Rooney was clearly in decline (SAF tried to tee up his departure before leaving) and Giggs was still playing CM at 40! Not to mention we had sold our best player to a major European rival and never really replaced him. Nobody can tell me that someone somewhere on the footballing-side did not identify this as a potential problem. Commercial A common argument that I keep hearing from the pro-Glazer posters is that they have increased our commercial revenues massively and therefore allowed us to increase our transfer spending as a result, even if they haven't put in any of their own personal dollars. Again, I think once you scratch the surface of this argument, it's not that strong. Firstly, United have ALWAYS been a very forward-thinking club in terms of exploring commercial opportunities of the pitch and, particularly in the PL era, could count on a large global fan base to support this. I may be wrong, but I seem to recall United were one of the first to open an official megastore, where one of the first to go on far-flung pre-season tours and were one of the first to really start trying to broaden their appeal to emerging footballing markets. This evidently did not arrive with the Glazers in 2005. Now, I am certain that if you look at our financials, commercial revenues, operating profits etc...will have increased significantly since 2005. However, how much of this is really directly attributable to the Glazers? As I have already said, every club in the PL has become SIGNIFICANTLY richer in the last few years alone, mainly owing to TV deals which are negotiated collectively. Also, the globalisation of football was happening well before the Glazer buyout. Targeting the Far East and the US was not a brilliant business strategy developed and implemented by the Glazer family...it was already happening and United were possibly uniquely placed to take advantage! It would be very interesting to compare United's percentage growth with percentage growth at some of the other established, non oil-owned PL clubs such as Tottenham, Arsenal and Everton. Are United substantially better off off the pitch because of the Glazers? I'm not sure there is strong evidence to suggest that. I do freely admit this is not an area I have looked into in great detail (partly the reason for this thread) therefore, I welcome statistics to prove that they HAVE directly been responsible for increased revenues etc...but please don't just say 'commercial revenue from sponsorships has doubled' etc....because unless you demonstrate this is above the norm and attributable to the Glazers, I'll just respond by saying that would have happened anyway Football Since the Glazers took over, our on-pitch performances have declined significantly after an initial peak shortly after they arrived. I think it is impossible to argue otherwise. At 29yrs of age, I can honestly say that this is the worst, most disorganised, least inspiring collection of Manchester United players I have ever seen (yes I remember the 'Djemba-Djemba years'). Pre-Glazers, United had never finished outside of the top 3 in the PL, in the last few seasons alone we have finished 6th three times, 5th and 4th, with last season's remote 2nd representing our best return. Now, of course, you cannot necessarily argue that this is all on the Glazers. The retirement of a long-serving legendary manager is likely to effect any club, as would the rise of the oil-funded clubs. However, whilst they don't appear to meddle in footballing matters, they are ultimately responsible for appointing the people that DO organise football matters. I am not going to name any names here as I don't want this thread to be totally derailed but CLEARLY whoever is making footballing decisions at Manchester United has been making some pretty bad ones lately. We're not just talking about dubious managerial appointments, I am also referring to decisions such as sanctioning giving a 29yo a 5yr contract worth almost double any of his teammates...I mean...again, a Yr.10 Economics student could have explained why 'taking on' a new employee at double the salary of his co-workers might cause problems, not to mention the fact that at 33/34 years of age this player would be worth virtually nothing and still be picking up huge wages! Of course, some people will lay this at Jose's door....that's fine, we will never know, Jose may have demanded that we sign Sanchez at any cost, but even allowing for that, surely it's on the SMT to say 'no'? So, just as a reminder - please let's not just have this turn into another spiteful 'tit for tat' thread. Let's have some quality arguments put forward backed up by evidence and logic. I am genuinely hoping to learn something. I may not change my mind but balanced arguments are important and I am genuinely interested to know whether the Glazer-ownership has had ANY positive repercussions?