Manchester United’s 1958 supporter group calls for ‘no complacency’ as they prepare to protest the club’s ownership at Old Trafford on Monday, despite interest from Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe in buying club
- Manchester United’s owners came under fire after their 4-0 loss on Saturday
- Protests against the Glazer family have been planned for Monday’s game
- The 1958 group has urged fans not to back down despite talks of a partial sale
- Apollo are currently in talks with the Glazers over buying a minority stake
The 1958 group of Manchester United supporters has urged fans to stay vigilant in their criticism of the club, despite talk of the Glazer family selling a minority stake.
Sportsmail understands that the Glazers are in talks with private equity firm Apollo over a sale of a stake, while Britain’s richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe has expressed interest in buying the club outright.
United fans’ disillusionment with their American owners is long-standing and they have come under renewed criticism after a shocking start to the season that has left the club bottom of the Premier League table after two games.
Despite talk of ownership changes at the club, the 1958 group were adamant fans should still come out in protest. They tweeted: ‘No complacency! This is not over!
‘It’s time to push hard to the finish line! Monday we expect large numbers. This is a chance for every United fan to be on the right side of history.
‘Do not let this pass! Time to unite and put all differences aside. Lets get our club back.’
In a previous tweet, the group outlined their plans for their plans for the protest and invited fans to join them before their clash with Liverpool at Old Trafford on Monday night.
Fans were encouraged to bring banners and flags, but told they must ‘keep it legal and peaceful’ to avoid ‘giving the Glazer propaganda machine a chance to spin the narrative.’
Manchester United’s owners have drawn criticism after the club’s dire start to the season
The 1958 group of United supporters called on fans to protest during Monday’s game
The Manchester United Supporters Trust has also spoken out about over ownership concerns.
They released a statement that read: ‘Speculation is mounting about a potential change of ownership or new investors at Manchester United. Whilst supporters have called for change, of course this has to be the right change.
‘Any prospective new owner or investor has to be committed to the culture, ethos and best traditions of the club. They have to be willing to invest to restore United to former glories, and that investment must be real new money spent on the playing side and the stadium.
‘Finally any new ownership structure must embed supporters, including a degree of fan share ownership, in their operating model. These are the criteria supporters will judge any bid on.
‘We are open to dialogue with any bidder, and look forward to any such discussions.’
The American Glazer family have been majority stakeholders in the club since 2005
The protest is planned to take place ahead of the Red Devils’ clash with Liverpool on Monday
The Glazers most recently came under fire from United fans in the aftermath of their 4-0 loss to Brentford on Saturday.
The Red Devils conceded four in the first 35 minutes, in a performance Gary Neville described as ‘like a men’s team against Under 9s.’
Speaking after the game, Neville said of the Glazers: ‘There is a family in America that is letting his employees take the blame. They need to get on a plane to Manchester and explain what the plan is.
‘The only money that has been spent on players has been borrowed or generated by the club. The Glazers have borrowed and used the revenue the club generates through its amazing fanbase.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe has expressed an interest in buying the club if it comes up for sale
‘The embedded failure over a ten year period has to come back to the owners. The time has come for the Glazers to leave or to explain their plan. The owner needs to show some courage and belief. Tell the fans what your plan is. Be here.’
The Glazer family initially brought shares in United in 2003, and became majority stakeholders in 2005.
They are now in talks with Apollo over selling a minority stake, although a deal is not expected to be completed until next month.
A spokesperson for Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest man, claimed the 69-year-old would be interested in buying United if the club were put up for sale.