The Glazers £6billion valuation of Man Utd doesn’t “stack up” as they look to sell the club, according to football finance expert Kieran Maguire.
Second bids from interested parties were submitted to Raine Group – the US bank put in charge of managing the process – last week but some reports have indicated that those bids still ‘fall short’ of the Glazers valuation.
INEOS founder Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim, the chairman of Qatar Islamic Bank and the son of a former Qatari prime minister, have reportedly submitted new offers around the £5bn mark.
Finnish businessman Thomas Zilliacus is the only other interested party to make his bid public with reports that there could be as many as eight bidders for the Premier League.
The Glazers acquired Man Utd for £750million in a highly-leveraged deal in 2005. After a controversial reign, they announced they were seeking “strategic alternatives” that could include a sale last year.
But Maguire reckons they have overvalued the club by some way with the football finance expert insisting that “the numbers simply don’t stack up”.
“When you look at cash generated by the business it is nowhere near £6bn,” Maguire told the Daily Mail.
“Last August, the market valued United at around £2bn. Potentially it is now worth double, but any more and you really should be crossing your fingers. Coming up with a valuation is more art than science.
“You look at how much cash the business is likely to make in the next 10 years and then you add a couple of magic numbers. I did that with United and, being generous with the predictions, came up with £2.8bn.
“The only way it would be worth near £6bn would be if you could take control of broadcast rights and sell them yourself. As we saw with Project Big Picture that is not going to happen, so the numbers simply don’t stack up.”
Man Utd claim to have a global following of around 1.1bn people, while they have 145,000 on a waiting list for season tickets.
Maguire added: “If you could turn all those followers into cash then you might have a chance.”
Man Utd are looking to reduce their wage bill too with reports goalkeeper David de Gea recently rejected their first offer to renew his contract.
It was described as a ‘good proposal’ by sources and negotiations are still ‘expected to reach a positive conclusion’ despite the early rejection.
De Gea insists he is just focusing on his football rather than the “noise” which follows him and the club everywhere.
The Spaniard told Sky Sports: “I’ve been here many, many years, enjoying every moment in this club playing many games. Of course it’s great to be here, it’s a massive club and I love the club and I’m really happy here, of course.
“It’s been the same over the years, there’s a lot of noise around the club but players just focus on games, especially the one we have on Sunday – a massive game for us because we want to finish in the top four.
“Like I say, we have many, many games so I think we have to be really, really caring on training, recovering well, helping the team and that’s the most important thing, more than contracts or anything.”
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