Man Utd takeover: PSG chief contacted as Glazers put pressure on Sheikh Jassim

Manchester United’s Glazer family owners have reportedly held talks with Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi to discuss the club’s proposed sale to Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani. The Red Devils were put up for sale last autumn, with Sheikh Jassim currently among the frontrunners to complete a takeover.

Sheikh Jassim has been in talks with United for months over the prospect of buying the Old Trafford outfit. According to The Athletic, Sheikh Jassim’s team initially consulted fellow Qatari Al-Khelaifi over the Glazers’ valuation of the club.

But Al-Khelaifi has since been contacted by the Glazers in an attempt to encourage Sheikh Jassim to increase his bid. Al-Khelaifi has even met with United’s current owners as well as Raine Group, the investment bank overseeing the sale, to discuss the bid.

The PSG president is chairman of Qatari state-owned beIN Media Group, as well as Qatar Tennis Foundation and Qatari Sports Investment-backed Premier Padel. He is also in charge of Qatar Sports Investments, which is overseen by the country’s sovereign wealth fund the Qatar Investment Authority.

Al-Khelaifi is a member of QIA’s board as well and was tasked by the Qatari government to grow the state’s global sport interests after last year’s World Cup. And his involvement in Sheikh Jassim's takeover bid has raised eyebrows across the Premier League as many club owners are concerned about the possibility of United being overseen by what is perceived by many to effectively be state ownership.

Sheikh Jassim, meanwhile, has reportedly kept out of negotiations to buy the 13-time Premier League champions and has instead left that part of the process to legal firm Macfarlanes and his financial advisors at the Bank of America. And he is hoping to beat Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe to get his hands on the club.

There are no current Premier League regulations that would prevent Al-Khelaifi, QSI or QIA from owning or co-owning the Red Devils, although the PSG president has been quick to rubbish suggestions that that could be on the agenda. But because of the apparent complicated nature of the takeover offer, many observers have suggested Ratcliffe’s bid would come with fewer regulatory worries.

Earlier this week, Sheikh Jassim reportedly made a fifth and final bid to complete a takeover of United. Ratcliffe, meanwhile, has also put forward a number of offers in recent months. But the Glazer family are yet to accept any as the takeover process rumbles on.

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