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Saudi Prince distanced from £3.8bn bid to wrestle control of Man Utd from the Glazers

10:08 AM WAT 18/02/2019
Glazer family Manchester United
Talk of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman readying a big-money offer to claim power at Old Trafford has been played down by Saudi Arabian ministers

Prince Mohammed bin Salman's rumoured interest in buying Manchester United is false according to a denial issued by one of his ministers in Saudi Arabia.

A report by The Sun claimed Bin Salman was readying a £3.8 billion ($4.9bn) bid – a deal that would give the Glazer family a huge £2.2bn profit on the club they controversially acquired for £790 million ($1bn) in 2005.

With the Glazers having struggled to win over the support of fans throughout their time in charge of the Red Devils, takeover speculation has surfaced at regular intervals.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman is the latest to have been linked with an effort to wrestle power from the current American ownership in Manchester.

A tweet from Turki Al-Shabanah, the minister for Saudi media, has admitted to a meeting taking place between United representatives and the Gulf state's royal investment fund, but only to discuss a potential sponsorship tie-up.

"The news that Prince Mohammed bin Salman desires to acquire Manchester United is completely untrue news," Al-Shabanah's tweet read.

"The fact of the matter is that the club held a meeting with the public investment fund to discuss an advertisement sponsorship project.

"The Fund listened to the proposals as [it would] any other".

In October 2017, United agreed a strategic partnership in Saudi Arabia with the country's General Sports Authority (GSA).

The Red Devils also have a commercial partnership with Saudi Telecom and, at the time of the GSA deal, United's group managing director Richard Arnold said: "The club has a long-standing relationship with Saudi Arabia and has over five million passionate fans in the region.

"Having the chance to help shape the football industry in the Kingdom is a great honour and it is something where we believe we can make a big difference."