Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s proposed partial takeover of Manchester United is unlikely to be finalised for several weeks, talkSPORT understands.
United are set to hold a pre-arranged board meeting on Thursday where the topic of the takeover will be high on the agenda.
However, it is not guaranteed that Ratcliffe’s proposal to pay £1.3billion for a 25 per cent stake will be put to a vote.
Ratcliffe is seeking eventual overall control and is still in talks with the Raine banking group, who are handling the sale process on behalf of the Glazer family, over the overall make-up of the deal.
Once a full agreement has been reached and approved by United’s 12-strong board of directors, including six members of the Glazer family, it is likely to take up to two months for Ratcliffe to pass the Premier League’s owners and directors test.
Joel and Avram Glazer have always been reluctant to enter into a full sale.
It’s understood that the Ineos owner will hope for full sporting control should a deal go through.
A Man United fan, Ratcliffe has been left with an unopposed route to the Red Devils boardroom following the decision for Sheikh Jassim bin Al Thani to pull out of the running.
Sources close to Sheikh Jassim confirmed that he withdrew his world record offer for the Old Trafford giants after failing to agree a deal with the Glazer family.
Discussing the news, talkSPORT’s chief football correspondent Alex Crook said: “Manchester United fans won’t be happy about this at all.
“As well as clearing the debts and removing the unpopular Glazer regime, Sheikh Jassim was willing to invest in the stadium, the training ground and the infrastructure and community around Manchester United.
“There were also significant funds promised to strengthen the team – that will not happen now and that paves the way for Sir Jim Ratcliffe to complete what we understand would be a minority takeover initially.
“He’s willing to buy 25 per cent of the football club and eventually have an overall controlling stake.
“What it means is that the Glazers are going nowhere.
“That won’t go down well with the Manchester United fans who have been protesting regularly inside and outside Old Trafford.”
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