Sheikh Jassim had an estimated final bid of more than £6bn for the English club.
Qatar’s Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani has allegedly withdrawn from the bidding process to buy English Premier League club Manchester United, several sources reported on Saturday evening.
The Qatari-banker had been engaged in the months-long bid for the club and was reported to have made an estimated final bid of $6 billion in the battle against British businessman Sir Jim Ratcliffe.
However, unlike his bidding opponent, Sheikh Jassim’s offer was a cash bid for 100% ownership of the club, as well as guaranteed funds to clear the club’s $1 billion debt.
“In the last few days, Sheikh Jassim has had further, final discussions and negotiations with the Glazers family to buy 100% of Manchester United,” renowned sports journalist Fabriizo Romano wrote in a post online.
“Sheikh Jassim’s bid proposition, once again, does NOT meet the Glazers’ family own valuation,” he added.
The journalist said Sheikh Jassim’s team declined to officially comment on the news citing confidentiality restrictions, but “have confirmed their withdrawal from the process.”
Now, sole bidder Ratcliffe is expecting to conclude a deal for a minority stake in the club, which is gauged to be 25%.
“Any minority investor – for example Jim Ratcliffe’s reported latest proposal to buy minority stake of the club – would leave the Glazers remaining at the club, which was never part of Sheikh Jassim’s vision,” Romano added.
“A minority bidder has the luxury to value the club higher, because they’re only buying a small stake in the club (not 100%),” the journalist explained.
Sheikh Jassim’s decision comes as frustrated United fans seek answers following extended talks to buy the club.
The Glazer family announced they were considering the sale of Manchester United in November of last year but have been silent throughout the entire process, providing zero clarity to fans.
“MUFC is in desperate need of new investment and new majority ownership. We hope this news accelerates that process rather than delays it,” Manchester United Supporters Trust said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
“Based on the last 11 months, no one can be quite sure. The Glazers need to make their position clear,” the statement added.