LGBTQ+ activist concerned by potential Qatari takeover of Man Utd
Express Sport understands construction work on Manchester United’s Carrington training complex was pre-planned and nothing to do with a potential takeover. Fans were sent into a frenzy on Friday, believing Sheikh Jassim was behind the improvement of the club’s academy building. However, with the Glazers still in charge, there’s still no guarantee the Qatari billionaire will win the race for the Red Devils.
Pictures surfaced on social media on Friday showing a crane at Carrington, with the complex getting some improvements as the end of the season creeps closer.
And some supporters then expressed a belief that Sheikh Jassim was behind the redevelopment.
However, Express Sport understands the construction had nothing to do with the Qatari billionaire or a potential takeover.
Instead, it was pre-planned by the club and had been on the cards for some time as they look to renovate behind the scenes.
Sheikh Jassim remains in the mix to buy United, having lodged four offers so far – with his last offer coming on May 16.
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The Glazers are yet to respond, however, and they’ve also not indicated which way they’re leaning as the situation continues to drag on.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe is also in the hunt, with the INEOS chief ready to let brothers Joel and Avram Glazer stay in reduced roles as a sweetener.
This is appealing to the siblings, who are reluctant to relinquish total power despite the opposition to their rule.
An announcement had previously been expected to happen on Friday, with the Raine Group in dialogue with potential takeover candidates.
But that didn’t happen and it’s unclear when the Glazers will make a final decision, with firms ready to offer minority investment as well.
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United’s Carrington training complex was criticised by Cristiano Ronaldo back in November, with the veteran telling Piers Morgan: “Nothing has changed, the pool, the jacuzzi… even the gym.
“Technologically, in the kitchen, even the ‘chefs’, who are people I really like and appreciate. They’ve stopped in time and that surprises me.
“I was surprised because I expected to see different things, as I said, in terms of infrastructure, technology… but unfortunately I still see things that I already saw when I was 23 or 24 years old.”
And Jesse Lingard then backed up Ronaldo’s comments while speaking in January.
“They’re so behind with everything,” Lingard said during an episode of the The Diary of a CEO Podcast.
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“You see [Manchester] City’s facilities, Tottenham’s facilities when we go there with England.
“People are miles ahead [of United].”
When asked about Ronaldo’s comments specifically, he added: “[United] are one of the biggest clubs in the world, you want the best food and a swimming pool and a jacuzzi and a sauna, but modernise it.
“You see like City’s facilities and you think ‘get up to date, catch up, because you’re way behind at the moment’.”
United are next in action against Fulham on Sunday (4pm).
And they’ll be hoping to end their season on a high, having already sealed a place in the top four.
The Red Devils have also beaten Fulham twice this season so far, too.
They won 2-1 at Craven Cottage before the World Cup in November, with Christian Eriksen and Alejandro Garnacho on target.
And United got the better of Marco Silva’s side in a 3-1 FA Cup win in March, with Bruno Fernandes bagging a brace and Marcel Sabitzer also scoring.
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