Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani has put in an 11th-hour fourth bid to buy Manchester United from the Glazer family after reports suggested that the Qatari royal's rival, Jim Ratcliffe, was in pole position to buy the British soccer club.
The updated offer, believed to be close to £5 billion ($6.2 billion) but shy of the current owners’ £6 billion valuation for the soccer club, was submitted to Raine Group Tuesday morning, the New York-based investment bank managing the sale of the team, Sky Sports, reported Wednesday.
The deadline for a third and final round of bidding for the club passed on April 28, but last week, reports emerged that Ratcliffe, the CEO of UK-based chemicals firm INEOS, had put in a revised offer that made him the favorite of United owners the Glazer family to take over the club.
Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest man, is understood to be offering to acquire a majority stake in the soccer team, while Thani, a Qatari banker and son of a former emir of Qatar, is planning to fully buy out the club with no debt. Thani believes that the offer is a very competitive one, as it includes nearly £1 billion worth of club debt and a separate fund to redevelop United’s Old Trafford stadium, the surrounding area and the team’s training ground.