Manchester United fans eager to see the back of the Glazer family may have breathed a disheartening sigh upon hearing news that the planned takeover of the club by the Red Knights is set to fall apart. The Red Knights, a 40-plus strong consortium of affluent Manchester United fans, were put together by former club director Jim O’Neill with the intention of buying out and then succeeding the disliked Glazer family as owners of the Old Trafford side. However, it appears that their bid may be on its last legs, as sources have revealed that internal divisions within the group and a lack of genuine belief that they can oust the club’s American owners are threatening to derail their campaign.
The consortium, who had attempted to mobilise support for their bid by linking up with fans’ groups such as the Manchester United Supporters Trust (MUST), were hailed in some quarters as potential saviours for the debt-ridden Old Trafford side. However indications of discontent within the Red Knights camp now may act as a blessing in disguise for fans of the club.
It is alleged that the problems currently plaguing the consortium have arisen as a result of a failure to unite so many different investors, many of whom have contrasting ideas for the club’s future. This assertion is no real surprise – managing to amalgamate the views of so many different people into one singular vision was always going to be a difficult task. Thankfully, recognition of this problem has occurred now before the group end up as owners of the Old Trafford side. Internal divisions such as this would have had catastrophic implications had the Red Knights been in charge of Manchester United, with the potential to have acted to the heavy detriment of the club. Supporters of the Red Devils need only look across the M62 to see how badly the warring tendencies of just two owners can destructively affect a club; the prospect of 40-plus fractious owners is a frightening prospect.
Despite the emergence of the aforementioned rumours over the last few days, the Red Knights have reiterated their continued desire to take over Manchester United, with a source within the group stating that “Talks have been going better than ever and are progressing very positively.” Evidently this statement contrasts drastically with recent conjecture, and it has been suggested that the group may only be pursuing a bid in order to avoid the embarrassment of failing to do so. Despite this assertion, it may be time to say good knight to the Red consortium.
Follow me on twitter at www.twitter.com/zarifrasul