Opinion: Time is running out for Manchester United and fans are tired of excuses

Manchester United have been projected to lose £139.39m in match day revenues.

This may explain why the Glazer family are holding the purse strings extra tight this summer, or preventing manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer from making signings until he sells players, but since the 2005 takeover there has been too many excuses made for their corrupt ownership of a football institution.

Up until the Government’s latest announcement, as per The Express, United were planning to reintroduce fans to games as early as last week’s season opener against Crystal Palace.

Data obtained from financial analysts Vysyble estimates that the overall projected loss across the Premier League will be £911.66m after UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed this week that spectators can not returned, as planned, in October. He also said restrictions are likely to be in place for the next six months.

Vysyble calculated these estimations from published 2018-19 balance sheets, factoring in the number of games already played by each club prior to lock dock during the 2019-20 season. They would then use data such as average attendances.

Match day revenue includes sales from tickets, hospitality, food and beverages — and, as you can see above, United are set to lose out on more than any other Premier League club.

On top of that, executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward used his programme notes at the weekend to discuss the impact the global pandemic has had on the club.

“Disruption from the pandemic is continuing to create huge economic pressures from the top to the bottom of the football pyramid,” he said. “While we are fortunate to be a more resilient position than most clubs, we are not immune from the impact. Despite this, we are delighted to have brought in Donny van de Beek from Ajax, adding further quality to a midfield already strengthened by the recruitment of Bruno Fernandes in January.”

It’s interesting that Woodward uses the pandemic as United’s reason for not spending how he wants you to think they would if this was an ordinary transfer market, but why no mention of the £120m United have paid in interest to banks over the last 5 years? The Glazer family have been paid owner dividends of £86m during the same spell.

Of course, the Glazers have not given a single interview to a newspaper or broadcaster since their 2005 takeover of the club, so they won’t answer the real questions that need answering. Instead they have Ed Woodward and now Matt Judge on puppet strings doing their dirty work.

Woodward simply cannot use the pandemic as their sole excuse and expect fans to accept that.

The Athletic revealed in May that over a 15-year period United have paid around £1.5bn in interest payments, bond buybacks, management fees, dividends and more.

And when Woodward mentions how the midfield was strengthened in January by Bruno Fernandes’ arrival, he forgets that United missed a trick waiting until the midway point of the season to sign him, and this is a completely different window. You don’t get praise for a signing you made in January when you are struggling to sign one player the following summer…

It’s not encouraging to hear a vice-chairman boast about signings in previous transfer windows when United’s business is far from finished.

Former United left-back Patrice Evra deserves enormous credit for speaking out this week on Instagram. Although he bizarrely claimed Avram Glazers ‘loves’ Manchester United (he doesn’t, he loves the money Manchester United makes him), Evra speaks out about how the club’s hierarchy is rampant in incompetence.

Time is running out and the figures don’t look good.

Read more: Manchester United linked to three Alex Telles left-back alternatives

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