apple manchester united sale news no interest news gbp 5 8 billion deal glazers

Apple has been pushing into sports content recently, even partnering with MLS

Apple is reportedly not interested in buying the English football club Manchester United. A previous report from Daily Star claimed that the technology giant had expressed interest in buying the club for GBP 5.8 billion (about Rs. 57,300 crore). But now, a new report has come forward, adding that sources with “direct knowledge of the situation” claim the previous report is false. The news comes in the wake of its current owners, the Glazer family, planning to end their 17-year-long reign that has been dominated by fan protests and declining performance.

Early on Thursday, Daily Star had originally claimed that Apple CEO Tim Cook was in talks with multiple banks, including The Raine Group LLC, to oversee the deal. But less than half a day later, MacRumors noted that “a source with direct knowledge of the situation said the report is false.”

While the technology giant has no interest in buying Manchester United, it has been pushing into sports content. It has partnered with Major League Baseball (MLB) to air weekly matches on Apple TV+ for the 2022 season. In football, Apple has a 10-year deal with the US top-flight Major League Soccer (MLS) for the next 10 years, which will be available as a standalone MLS Season Pass starting February next year on the Apple TV app.

The Glazers had initially set a “colossal world record” asking price of GBP 8.25 billion (about Rs. 83,827 crore), “but have been told this is unrealistic in the current market.” Had that acquisition gone through, it would have been the costliest in the history of football, surpassing Todd Boehly’s GBP 4.25 billion (about Rs. 41,900 crore) takeover of rival club Chelsea FC.

“The process is designed to enhance the club’s future growth, with the ultimate goal of positioning the club to capitalise on opportunities both on the pitch and commercially,” an official statement from the club said when the current Manchester United owners explained their view.

Manchester United is also looking to revamp its iconic Old Trafford stadium, that would require full demolition and rebuilding from scratch. Daily Mail notes that rebuilding the stadium would cost approximately GBP 1.5 billion (about Rs. 14,800 crore), making it the most expensive playing field. The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London — belonging to the eponymous fellow Premier League club — trails close behind at a value of GBP 1 billion (about Rs. 9,900 crore).

The update comes in the wake of Portuguese athlete Cristiano Ronaldo leaving Manchester United under immediate effect, by “mutual agreement” between both parties. The footballer served two spells at the club, scoring 145 goals in 346 appearances. Currently unemployed at club level, Ronaldo is playing at the Qatar FIFA World Cup for his country. The shake-up ensued after the striker gave an inflammatory interview, criticising the club’s ambitions and decisions.

Manchester United, who once dominated England’s top-flight Premier League, haven’t won a single title since 2013, and no major trophies in the larger European contest. “The tipping point came in the wake of the club’s involvement in the failed European Super League proposal and subsequent criticism that followed,” Daily Star concludes.


Apple launched the iPad Pro (2022) and the iPad (2022) alongside the new Apple TV this week. We discuss the company’s latest products, along with our review of the iPhone 14 Pro on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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