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Gampern

NOT FOR $AL£

55 Beiträge in diesem Thema

Wie ihr ja alle mitbekommen habt, hat Manchester United plc eine Übernahmeanfrage erhalten! Dass Malcolm Glazer dahinter steckt, scheint auch klar!

Einige werden wohl nicht realisiert haben, was eine Übernahmen für United hiesse:

Der Verein kann eigentlich nur verlieren! Laut Experten und Wirtschaftsmagazinen wie z.B. Forbes, reicht das Vermögen von Glazer nicht aus (wenn der die Tampa Bay Buccaneers verkaufen würde dann wohl schon, dies ist aber absolut unwahrscheinlich) um Manchester United zu übernehmen! Er müsste daher eine hohe Summe an Darlehen aufnehmen. Alleine die Zinsen würden sich in der Grössenordnung des jährlichen United-Gewinns vor Steuern bewegen! Es liegt klar auf der Hand, dass er nur das Abschröpfen des Vereins im Sinn hat! Abgesehen davon, dass er wohl den jährlichen Gewinn einstreifen würde, auch die Supporter würden kräftig zu Kasse gebeten! Bei den Buccs hat er alleine in dieser Saison die Kartenpreise um 20% erhöht! Um sein Darlehen zu finanzieren kann man wohl davon ausgehen, dass Ähnliches auch bei MUFC eintreffen würde!

Im Prinzip ist es aber wie ein Glücksspiel: Wenns gut geht gibts einen Gewinner: Glazer; läufts schief, ist United am Ende! Dies sind keine Teufel-an-die-Wand-Malereien, dies sind die Tatsachen! Manche geben sich vielleicht der Illusion hin, Manchester ist doch eh eine Gelddruckmaschine die niemals versiegen kann! Dies ist vielleicht nicht ganz unrichtig, jedoch nicht, wenn man laufend Kapital davon entnimmt! Die Situation ist zwar nicht unbedingt mit der von Lids United damals vergleichbar, aber anhand dieses Beispieles kann man schon erkennen, wie schnell es gehen kann!

Eins ist natürlich auch klar, von Fussball hat der werte Herr wohl nicht allzu viel Ahnung! Geld ist das, was zählt! Und da hört sich der Spass bei ihm auf! Angeblich hat er sogar seine Schwester bezüglich des Nachlass ihrer Mutter vor Gericht gezerrt. Dabei gings, für seine Verhältnisse, aber nicht um Unsummen, sondern um EINE Million $!

Toll auch der Umgang mit Fans und Stadtverantwortlichen in Tampa: Er wollte ein neues Stadion für die Buccs haben und kam mit der Stadtverwaltung zur Übereinkunft, dass beide Seiten jeweils die Hälfte des $200 Millionen Projektes tragen sollten. Nicht nur, dass er sein Wort brach und sein Versprechen nicht einlöste, er drohte noch dazu mit einem Umzug in eine andere Stadt mit dem Team! Die Steuerzahler dürfen noch heute die Kosten mittels der lokalen "half-cent sales tax" bezahlen!

Eine Gruppe von Saisonticketbesitzern verklagte ihn nach dem Umzug ins neue Stadion wegen der Degradierung ihrer Sitzplätze. Seine Antwort? Eine Gegenklage wegen Verleumdung!

Die United Fans hier werden sich wohl denken "ja, was kann ich schon machen?"! Ja, das ist es, auf was ich hinauswollte. Mit dem Stimmrecht, dass sich unsereiner mit einem Aktienkauf leisten könnte, kann man alleine nicht viel anfangen! Daher schliessen sich alle Supporter zusammen, um gemeinsam gegen eine feindliche Übernahme vorzugehen. Auf http://www.shareholdersunited.org/ kann man sich anschliessen, indem man Shareholders United beitritt (£12) eine Aktie bekommt (man kann sich auch mehrere kaufen, für bis zu £5000 glaub ich, also genug), aber eben sein Stimmrecht an die SU abtritt! Die vertreten dann eben die Supporter und sorgen dafür, das United unabhängig bleibt! Bitte schaut mal rein!

Es dürfen sich ruhig auch Leute anderer Colour beteiligen (insbesondere denke ich da an ianrush :D :D :D)

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Ja was soll man da schon sagen. Natürlich kann ich eine gewisse Schadenfreude nicht verbergen, da United doch eine der Speerspitzen der Kommerzialisierung des Fussballs war/ist. Aber wirklich wünschen tu ich nicht einmal euch so etwas.

Aber ob es sich verhindern lässt sei einmal dahin gestellt. Schlussendlich besitzt Glazer ja schon mehr als 19 % von United, und sollten die ehemaligen Mehrheitseigentümer McManus und Magnier sich entscheiden zu verkaufen, werden auch noch so viele protestierende Mancs daran nichts ändern können. Selbst Stadionboykotte würden wenig daran ändern, denn die 70.000 werden sich immer finden lassen, die halt wegen Ronaldo, Rooney oder anno dazumals Beckham ein Spiel in Old Trafford sehen wollen und nicht wegen der Geschichte oder den Besitzern des Clubs.

Mittlerweile bietet Glazer ja schon Alex Fergusson eine grössere Rolle im Club an, kein dummer Schachzug, denn AF ist wohl einer, der wesentlichen Einfluss auf die Fans hat. Meiner Meinung nach, so hart es auch klingen mag, werden Aktionen wie Shareholders United nicht viel bewirken können. United sieht sich, wie die meisten Clubs, mittlerweile eher als Entertainment Unternehmen und nicht mehr allein als Football Club. Und dadurch hat man sich die Schlange Glazer leider schon vor Jahren in den Verein geholt.

Schaut bitter für euch aus.

Ganz interessanter Artikel aus dem Guardian, vor allem in der unteren Hälfte !

Glazer offers Ferguson more power

Tycoon targets manager for help in United takeover bid

Nils Pratley

Thursday October 7, 2004

The Guardian

Sir Alex Ferguson will be offered a beefed-up role at Old Trafford by Malcolm Glazer as part of the American tycoon's attempt to reverse fans' hostile reaction to his takeover plans.

Glazer and his advisers are understood to have been shocked by the level of opposition from groups such as Shareholders United to their ambition to buy the club. They have identified Ferguson as the only figure at Old Trafford with the power to calm emotions and lead a charm offensive.

"It is definitely the case that the Glazers have a huge regard for Ferguson and they want him to continue as manager and they want him to remain totally involved with the club and be part of its continuing success," said one City source.

It is not known whether this will extend to Ferguson being offered a seat on the board. However, Glazer hopes to persuade the manager to back what is being described as a "new model" of football club ownership.

Details are still unclear but its centrepiece is likely to be a type of extended and formal involvement for supporters. It will be presented as a way of generating funds for further investment in the team and the club's infrastructure.

"The Glazers want to run it like a club," said the source. "There have undoubtedly been distractions from running it as a plc. It has not served the interests of Manchester United in recent times. The Glazers love football and they love the club and they are good at sports management."

Such a message will inevitably be hard to sell in the stands, where the Glazers are regarded as investors solely in pursuit of profit. It would be a huge public relations coup if Ferguson were persuaded to support a takeover by the owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The intensity of some fans' feelings was demonstrated on Monday night when the United director Maurice Watkins's house and two cars were daubed with red paint. It was seen as the first act by a militant wing of supporters in a "fight dirty" campaign to deter Glazer from bidding.

By contrast, the American appears increasingly confident of securing financing for his plans and being able to present a formal takeover proposal to the United board, probably next week.

The key remains the 29.9% stake owned by JP McManus and John Magnier via their Cubic Expression investment fund. If the Irish duo agree to sell to Glazer, the American is virtually assured of gaining majority control as he already owns 19.3% of United's shares.

Neither McManus nor Magnier is thought to have spoken directly to Glazer since United's announcement on Monday of the takeover approach. However, talks between the two parties' advisers, with the US investment bank JP Morgan acting for Glazer, appear to have opened.

One source said the Irish have made clear they have no interest in being co-investors with Glazer: if they agree to sell, they will want to be bought out completely for cash.

Manchester United's shares yesterday rose 5.5p to 273p -an increase of 2% - as City investors, who on Monday were deeply sceptical of Glazer's chances of success, were persuaded that a takeover is imminent. Some 3.5m United shares changed hands, about 1% of the company.

Glazer's attempt to woo fans may also extend to addressing directly two key areas of concern - ticket prices and the transfer budget. Pledges may be made on both issues to try to counter United supporters' arguments that Tampa Bay under Glazer's ownership has a poor record on both.

Shareholders United has highlighted the ticket-price rises of 10% at Tampa in the first two seasons after Glazer's $192m (£107m at current rates) purchase of the franchise nine years ago. He has also been blamed for the team's losing start to the new season less than two years after winning the Super Bowl.

· You've read the piece, now have your say. Email your comments to football.editor@guardianunlimited.co.uk.

bearbeitet von ianrush

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Man kanns auch positiv sehen Glazer wäre immer noch besser für euch als wenn ich in Besitz eures Kommerzclubs kommen würde! :lol:

aber im Ernst auch ich würde es schade finden wenn United diesen Weg wähln würde!

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Dass ihr Beide keine Schadenfreunde empfinden würdet, würde mich ja auch wundern...

Bei dem Punkt, dass solche Aktionen nichts bewirken, muss ich dir aber widersprechen! Vielleicht kannst du dich noch daran erinnern, 1998 wollte Rupert Mordoch (BSkyB) United übernehmen! Mit den Verantwortlichen war man sich schon handelseinig geworden, doch landesweite Proteste der Fangruppen (zu diesem Anlass wurde SU gegründet) zwangen den Australier schliesslich zum Rückzug! Und solche Dinge wie im 2. Absatz hat sich der Guardian auch nicht selbst ausgedacht!

Natürlich kann es immer noch, aus Supporter Sicht, schief gehen, aber man hat die Wahl, dagegen zu kämpfen, oder sich einfach alles gefallen lassen!

Bzgl. Stadionboykotte: Ich bin mir natürlich über die Herrscharren der "Gloryhuner" bewusst, aber so dämlich kann man nicht sein, dass man die Thematik nicht wenigstens ansatzweise kapiert!

@Spion

Dir würde ich nicht mal eine Flasche Bier anvertrauen! Zumindest keine volle! :D

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Dass ihr Beide keine Schadenfreunde empfinden würdet, würde mich ja auch wundern...

Bei dem Punkt, dass solche Aktionen nichts bewirken, muss ich dir aber widersprechen! Vielleicht kannst du dich noch daran erinnern, 1998 wollte Rupert Mordoch (BSkyB) United übernehmen! Mit den Verantwortlichen war man sich schon handelseinig geworden, doch landesweite Proteste der Fangruppen (zu diesem Anlass wurde SU gegründet) zwangen den Australier schliesslich zum Rückzug! Und solche Dinge wie im 2. Absatz hat sich der Guardian auch nicht selbst ausgedacht!

Natürlich kann es immer noch, aus Supporter Sicht, schief gehen, aber man hat die Wahl, dagegen zu kämpfen, oder sich einfach alles gefallen lassen!

Bzgl. Stadionboykotte: Ich bin mir natürlich über die Herrscharren der "Gloryhuner" bewusst, aber so dämlich kann man nicht sein, dass man die Thematik nicht wenigstens ansatzweise kapiert!

@Spion

Dir würde ich nicht mal eine Flasche Bier anvertrauen! Zumindest keine volle! :D

Du sie gehen zu United, also is dein Argument schon von alleine widerlegt :D.

Was aber der grosse Unterschied zu der Situation 1998 ist, was ich glaube, nun McManus und Magnier wirklich verkaufen wollen. Schlussendlich haben sie schon ein Gefecht gegen AF verloren. Denen kommt glaub ich ein gut dotiertes Übernahme Angebot von Glazier gerade recht, um gross anzucashen.

Klarerweise muss man wenigstens versuchen etwas dagegen zu machen, aber wie schon im ersten Post gesagt, glaube ich nicht daran, dass wenn wirklich der Wille zum Verkauf da ist, etwas erreicht werden kann.

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Was die beiden Pferderlfanaten wollen, weiss man (noch) nicht so genau. Das Handelsblatt z.B. will wissen, dass die Beiden auch an einer Übernahme interessiert wären! Immerhin halten sie ja schon 28,9% der Aktien über ihre Investmentfirma! Weiters glaub ich eher nicht daran, dass sie sich so einfach zurückziehen werden. Die Streiterein mit SAF resultierten daher, da sie die "Macht" im Verein und eben den nötigen Überblick haben wollten!

glaube ich nicht daran, dass wenn wirklich der Wille zum Verkauf da ist, etwas erreicht werden kann.

Der Wille war bei Murdoch auch vorhanden! Und, ist er Besitzer geworden oder nicht?

Du sie gehen zu United, also is dein Argument schon von alleine widerlegt .

Und dann kommen wieder so Sprüche wie "Forever in our shadow"! Jaja!

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@ Gampern

wenn du sie nicht leer zurückhaben willst ist das auch eine gute Einstellung mir gegenüber! :finger:;)

Mir ist ehrlich gesagt egal was bei United passiert es wäre Schade wenn solche Übernahmen die Regel werden würden aber solange es nur United ist! :D

Ich seh euch schon mit 2 RB und einem Quaterback in der Startaufstellung!

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Hier noch ein weiterer Artikel zur Thematik:

United Fans Stage Protest

Around thirty protestors stopped Manchester United's reserve game on Thursday as the battle to keep tycoon Malcolm Glazer away hots up.

The supporters, carrying a 'not for sale' banner strode onto the field half an hour into the game with Birmingham - which United led 2-1 - and marched in front of the MUTV cameras who were covering the game live.

The peaceful demonstration, which lasted around three minutes, ended when the supporters were shepherded off the field by a handful of stewards at Altrincham's Moss Lane ground.

It comes two days after club director Maurice Watkins had his car vandalised in retribution for the one million shares he sold in February, ending up as part of Glazer's 19.1% stake in the Old Trafford outfit.

Wäre natürlich schade, wenn Glazer den Verein übernehmen würde. Kenne leider zu wenig seine wirtschaftlichen Potentiale und Hintergründe aber kann mir nicht vorstellen, dass er zu große Darlehen aufnehmen würde um ManU zu bekommen; Aber mit Glazer ist mit Sicherheit nicht zu spassen, der ist ein eiskalter Gecshäftsmann und schert sich wohl nur ums Geld! Eigentlich schade, dass in letzter zeit besonders im englischen Fußball Übernahmegerüchte bzw. Übernahmen die Top News sind! Aber auch ich würds eigentlich nicht so schad um ManU finden :D

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Nachdem es ja aufgrund der geplatzten Verhandlungen zw. Glazer und M&M ja schon so aussah, als sei der Leprechaun bereits gescheitert, wurde am Freitag vermeldet, dass Credit Suisse First Boston in seinem Namen für 65 Millionen € weitere Aktien erworben hat! Damit hält er bei 25,5%, was wohl ein klares Zeichen dafür ist, dass er seine Pläne noch nicht aufgegeben hat!

Glazer is back on the attack to buy United

American tycoon raises his stake to 25.5% to put pressure on major Irish players

Nils Pratley

Saturday October 16, 2004

The Guardian

Malcolm Glazer yesterday launched a stock-market raid on Manchester United, ordering his stockbrokers to buy up shares at 285p in an aggressive late-afternoon operation.

The American tycoon succeeded in raising his stake from 19.2% to 25.5% in a move that was the clearest possible indication that he is still determined to buy United and wants to launch a full bid.

The raid was also seen as a show of strength aimed at encouraging the Irishmen JP McManus and John Magnier, owners of the key 28.9% stake, to return to the negotiating table.

It was also designed to kill the chances of a counter-proposal from Keith Harris, the chairman of the broker Seymour Pierce, who has been working on a scheme to make United immune from takeover. At over 25%, Glazer's stake is now so large that it could be used as a powerful block to other proposals.

"This demonstrates the Glazers' commitment to the club," said one of the family's advisers. "They are long-term investors and they wanted parity with McManus and Magnier."

Supporters' groups reacted with dismay to the prospect that Glazer's plans, which are expected to include hefty levels of debt, are still alive. Oliver Houston, a spokesman for Shareholders United said: "We'll continue to fight tooth and nail to protect our club from Glazer. This latest development is yet another wake-up call but the battle is not over yet. He does not seem to realise that alienating a customer base does not make good business sense.

"We do not want him here and we won't rest on our laurels even if it means boycotting merchandise. The supporters do not want to spend their money on items such as club shirts to ease Glazer's debts."

The market raid was launched after the long-term shareholder UBS, a Swiss bank, offered to sell its 8m shares to the Glazer camp at 285p. The offer was accepted and Glazer's advisers then instructed Credit Suisse First Boston to offer the same price to other market sellers and a further 7.8m shares were bought. It is thought Glazer was aiming to reach 29%.

"They have always been buyers when stock has been available," said one City source. "In this case, when the Irish were saying they were walking away, liquidity was created allowing them [the Glazers] to pick up shares."

United supporters will also be alarmed that the reasons for the breakdown in talks between the Glazers and McManus and Mangier on Thursday are more complicated than first appeared.

It is now clear that the central sticking point was the proposed structure of Glazer's purchase of the Irish shares.

It is understood the American wanted Cubic Expression, the Irishmen's investment vehicle, to give an irrevocable undertaking that it would accept an offer of 300p a share that would have been put to all shareholders. If Cubic had wanted to accept that price, it would still have run the risk that Glazer's bid could fail for other reasons - such as interference from regulators or politicians.

Cubic is thought to have told JP Morgan that the only acceptable form in which it would consider offers for its stake would be a straightforward purchase of its shares. Under Stock Exchange rules, such a deal would trigger a mandatory bid for United's entire share capital - but, crucially, Cubic would be protected if the bid failed for other reasons.

There is no reason to believe the Irish would have accepted 300p had it been offered in an acceptable form - the talks never got that far. Equally, however, they have not formally ruled out selling to Glazer at the right price and under the right structure. "They are business people," said one source.

Glazer's advisers will now seek to re-open talks with the Irish, although one admitted that breaking the deadlock would be hard. "We are now really back to where we started," he said.

Glazer's share-buying spree came only hours after United issued a statement saying it had held talks with the Glazer family but that "there is currently no definitive proposal for the board to consider."

The directors gave a clear hint to fans that it would consider the level of debt in any Glazer bid before giving a recommendation.

"The board can assure shareholders in the company and fans of the club that, should any proposal be made in the future, the board will take into account all relevant considerations ... and any impact these considerations may have on the future operation of the football club," it said.

The battleground

Questions and answers

What has changed?

Yesterday's dramatic events do not change the big picture: Manchester United is still a quoted Stock Exchange company run by an independent board of directors. Glazer's stake has risen to 25.5% but, while it remains under 29%, he is under no obligation to launch a full bid. If he were to do so, though, he would have to offer at least 285p a share, the price he paid yesterday.

Can Glazer get control without the Irish stake?

Technically, yes; in practice, no. JP McManus and John Magnier's stake is 28.9% and Glazer's ambition is full ownership. To take the company properly private, he will need to get to 75% or, better, 90%.

Why didn't the Irish sell to the Glazer?

The Irish broke off talks because of the way Glazer structured his offer. The Irish said they are long-term investors in United and have lived up to that promise. They are also businessmen - if somebody offers them a silly price, don't be surprised if they sell.

So what happens now?

The ball is in Glazer's court. He could sit tight and wage a war of attrition. More likely, he will try again to coax the Irish into selling their shares.

Could anybody else bid?

Unlikely - the price is now getting seriously high. But don't rule out anything.

How long could this go on?

Impossible to guess.

Source: The Guardian

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Glazer Increases Stake To 28.11%

Holding in Company

Manchester United PLC has today been advised that Malcolm I Glazer Family Limited Partnership has, as at 19 October 2004, a holding of 73,711,458 ordinary shares representing approximately 28.11 per cent of the issued share capital of the Company.

The issued share capital of the Company is 262,187,628 ordinary shares.

Manchester United PLC, Tuesday 19 October.

:nein:

bearbeitet von Gampern

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Zwei so tolle Tage hintereinander! United hat die Gespräche mit Glazer bezüglich einer Übernahme beendet! :clap:

Hier noch ein Interview von unseren CEO, David Gill:

Q&A: David Gill's Perspective

Manchester United's Board today announced that it had terminated talks with the Glazer family over a proposed takeover offer.

A statement to the stock exchange said that the possible financial structure was not in the best interests of the long-term future of the club.

David Gill spoke exclusively to MUTV to explain the situation. Here is what the United chief executive had to say...

Can you explain the reason why the Board have terminated discussions with the Glazer family?

"I think it is down to this simple reason: We have been looking at the proposals the Glazer family made, analysing them with our advisors, and the key aspect of that proposal was the level of debt they were going to use in order to make their offer. We felt as a Board that that level of debt, coupled with their business plan, meant it was an unattractive proposal. We’ve seen many examples of debt in football over the years and the difficulties it causes. We know what that means and we think that is inappropriate for this business. We need to have a sensible structure for the Board to take the club forward."

At this moment in time, do you still expect any kind of bid from the Glazer family?

"That is up to them. They will clearly consider their options and review what they should do and no doubt come back to us. But, at the moment, we have terminated those discussions. One of the strengths of Manchester United has been its capital structure built up over many years since 1990 when we first floated on the stock market. We think that structure is appropriate for football business. It’s also important to note that we don’t have an issue with the Glazer family. It is about leverage (using debt to finance an offer)."

And you are just awaiting the Glazer family’s response?

"That is right. We put the announcement out this morning. We have a decent working relationship with them, but the ball is in their court so to speak."

The Glazer family still hold 28.11% of shares, do you expect them to stay at that figure, sell their shares or increase their holding?

"I couldn’t comment on that. That is their decision. We will work with them and Cubic and Shareholders United to build a structure going forward."

What about the support of United's fans in all this?

"We have very vocal fans and one of the key strengths of Manchester United are those fan groups. But they have to understand – and I think most of them do – that the Board has to consider any bona fide proposal for the company. We have done that and the fans have made their views clear. The Board has assessed the proposal with its advisors - having met with the Glazer family and their advisors - to see whether it was in the interests of the company. Some might say we have taken a bit of time about coming up with the response we put out on Monday morning, but we think we have done everything responsibly."

Have you been touched by the feeling of support from the fans?

"It certainly doesn’t surprise me. That is one of Manchester United’s strengths. I remember clearly back in 1998 when Sky made a bid for us. There was evidence of that in the views of the fans. It is certainly is one of our strengths."

What do you see as the next step, because all this cannot have been helpful to the club?

"It is disruptive, it would be silly not to recognise that. The statement we put out this morning was quite clear. In due course we would like to work with the Glazer family, Cubic Expression, Shareholders United and our other shareholders to work on a structure that we think will bring the club long-term stability. That must be our aim and is what the Board intends to do."

Hopefully we can start talking about Manchester United for football reasons again…

"That is right. As I say, we are a very well-known football club and there are benefits from that through our commercial deals, but you are absolutely right. As a distraction, this can’t be helpful and we want to move forward."

It’s a pertinent point that the football pitch reflects what happens in all of this…

"Very much so. Our capital structure, for example, meant that we could move quickly on transfer deadline day to acquire Wayne Rooney. Throughout the 1990s we have used the operating cash flow of the business (i.e. profits each year) to reinvest back in the business, whether that be the physical assets - the training ground or the stadium; or the playing side of it – acquiring players and player contracts. That model is probably envied throughout the football world and is appropriate for us going forward."

Gill: Why we broke off Glazer talks

Manchester United have set themselves on a collision course with Malcolm Glazer after telling the American business tycoon they will not entertain his takeover proposals for the club.

To the delight of supporters' groups, who have campaigned vigorously against Glazer since he made his preliminary approach on October 4, United confirmed to the Stock Exchange this morning they had broken off talks with the man who now owns 28.11% of the club.

Chief executive David Gill insisted the move should not be interpreted as 'anti-Glazer' rather 'anti-leverage', citing the massive loans Glazer would have to take on to complete the deal as the major reason behind today's shock announcement.

"The level of debt required was not in the best interests of the club going forward," Gill told BBC Radio 5 Live.

"As a board, we have a duty to consider any bona-fide offer but in this instance, we felt the business plan could be detrimental to the success of Manchester United.

"The club has 126 years of history and is recognised as one of the most successful football clubs in the world. I don't think any sensible person would think we could recommend a proposal that could jeopardise something that has been built up over so many years."

Aha, da hat sich wohl jemand die in meiner Sig angegebene Seite durchgelesen! :D

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Heart of the matter

Stuart Brennan

MANCHESTER United fan Steve Donoghue was given a standing ovation at the club's annual meeting last week for an impassioned plea to the board to back a fans' takeover.

The media reporting the meeting was obsessed with the big "players" in a drama which unfolded as the day wore on.

Three directors were voted off the plc board by predatory American tycoon Malcolm Glazer and the subsequent withdrawal of support for Glazer's bid by bankers JP Morgan hit the headlines.

But, largely ignored, there were also a series of from-the-heart speeches from United fans, expressing their concern at what the future holds for their club.

Among them was Donoghue, a 47-year-old Red who claimed to have clocked up 246,000 miles following United to 16 different countries in a lifetime of support.

He appealed to the board to back the efforts of fans to take a bigger stake in the club and wrest control from men whose sole concern is to make money.

M.E.N Sport reproduces part of his speech here:

"The board is so fond of quoting statistics, and pointing out to us how much it spends, it seems it has forgotten the true meaning of what running a football club should be all about.

"It's about doing the best on and off the pitch for the supporters that come to be entertained by the players on a Saturday, Thursday, Sunday, Tuesday or whatever day Sky wants.

"And you can't blame the media vultures for grabbing what they can. No, it seems you were that busy grabbing their TV money, somebody forgot to check the small print that allows them to change fixtures at a whim, which I am sure everyone here, including the manager and players, is fed up with.

"I'll give you a few statistics. In my 47 years of following United I have travelled 264,000 miles to 16 different countries at an approximate cost of £45,000. That's about 14 per cent of my 32 years' adult earning salary - a week's wages for some players nowadays."

Holding up his scarf, he went on: "This is my 1960's scarf. It has taken 40-odd years to build this collection into a fine work of art - it has character, it provokes memories and emotions, it is part of the history of what being a Red is all about.

"All those years, all those emotions, all that money was spent willingly, because of the love and loyalty to my club, asking nothing in return, except honest toil from my team on the pitch.

"Before you think these are just inane ramblings, all of you present, just ask yourselves how much have YOU spent following United over the years. Do a few quick sums and then multiply that by 60,000 and you will see that we, yes WE, have invested hundreds of millions of pounds into OUR club. And you lot get it all for free.

"When you needed us, when the club wasn't doing so well, we were there. When you had no sponsors, we were there. When you begged us to help the Development Associations we dug deep and helped to build parts of Old Trafford.

"Buy shares you said. One United, it's your club, you said. Buy a brick for the walk of fame, be part of the dream ... well you made us what we are today. Look at what WE the fans did out of respect for Sir Matt. We stood for hours in the pouring rain to honour him. WE came to the Munich memorial game because we knew the club did too little too late, WE paid that money to the surviving relatives, and WE have stood by Sir Alex Ferguson when some influential shareholders wanted him out.

"So you are to blame for our obsession, yet you expect fans to just hand it all over to the next fat cat who comes along, to maybe one day, asset-strip us like our feeder club down the road in Yorkshire ... I don't think so.

"This scarf is true commitment, fans re-investing all their hard-earned wages, this is OUR long term investment in OUR club. Without OUR support you would have no revenue, no sponsors, no TV contracts.

"Don't forget, its not just the fans who will be affected by a takeover, all your jobs will be on the line as well.

"But, hey, you'll all be very rich men. The people of Manchester and Salford won't forget what you've done, you will be in the club's folklore, but for all the wrong reasons. Don't let that happen."

Donoghue went on to ask the board to commit itself to encouraging the millions of Reds worldwide, using their own media outlets, to build the supporters' trust holding in the club to the 25 per cent mark that would allow any takeover bid to be thwarted.

He wound up: "This, is our Alamo, the line has been drawn. It's ironic that if Glazer wants to vote you lot off the board, you'll have to come to the small shareholder fans to keep your jobs.

"So, to coin a phrase, you are either with us or against us ... which will it be?"

Quelle: manchesteronline

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Bin zwar kein Manu Fan, aber ich würde es schade finden wenn Glatzer den Verein aufkaufen würde. finde ein Fussballverein sollte nicht einen einzigen gehören sondern den Fans und die sind im Old Trafford großartig(war schon 2xmal dort).

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