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Jim Ratcliffe: Manchester United’s New Era Unfolds

In a significant development, Manchester United has announced that Sir Jim Ratcliffe, chairman of Ineos Group, has agreed to buy a 25 per cent stake in the club for around £236 million (€272 million). As part of the deal, Ineos will assume delegated responsibility for the club’s football operations, which includes all aspects of men’s and women’s football operations and academies. The agreement also provides for the injection of $300 million into the club’s infrastructure.

The joint ambition is to create a world-class football operation, building on the club’s existing strengths, including its successful off-pitch performance. Ratcliffe, a lifelong supporter of the club and a local boy, believes that the commercial success of Manchester United has not been fully unlocked in recent times. He plans to bring his global knowledge, expertise, and talent from the wider Ineos Sport group to drive further improvement at the club.

Ratcliffe’s involvement is expected to bring significant benefits to the club, including improved football operations, increased investment in infrastructure, and a renewed commitment to success on the pitch. The deal is subject to customary regulatory approvals, and all parties are hopeful that it will be completed as soon as possible.

As a major shareholder, Ineos will have a significant role in shaping the club’s future. Ratcliffe will serve on the Manchester United PLC board and the Manchester United Football Club boards, alongside two additional seats for Ineos representatives. The agreement also provides Ineos with the opportunity to acquire up to 25 per cent of the club’s Class A shares.

Jim Ratcliffe (Via Jim Ratcliffe/Twitter)

The takeover is seen as a positive development for Manchester United, which has faced criticism in recent times for its on-pitch performance and business strategy. Under Ratcliffe’s leadership, the club is expected to benefit from the investor’s global experience and expertise in the sport.

The deal marks a significant change in the club’s ownership structure, with the Glazer family retaining a majority stake. The agreement is a testament to the club’s enduring appeal and global following, which has attracted the interest of investors such as Ratcliffe.

In a statement, Ratcliffe emphasized his commitment to working with everyone at the club to drive the club forward. He believes that the club’s shared ambition is clear: to see Manchester United return to the top of English, European, and world football. The takeover is seen as a significant stepping stone towards achieving this goal.

As the deal moves forward, Manchester United supporters will be eager to see how the club’s new ownership structure affects its on-pitch performance and business strategy. With Ratcliffe’s investment and expertise, the club has the potential to regain its status as a major force in European football.

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