‘Red Knights’: Glazers told to loosen Manchester United grip after ESL row

Lord O’Neill and Sir Paul Marshall urge the Glazers to reduce their stake in the club to below 50% in a letter.

The pair led an attempt to prise Manchester United away from the Glazer family’s control a decade ago, but now they are back in the media calling for the Glazers to loosen their grip in the wake of this week’s European Super League failure.

According to Sky News, Lord O’Neill – who was firmly behind the Red Knights campaign in 2010 – and the hedge fund manager Sir Paul Marshall have written to Joel Glazer.

What they are demanding is a string of immediate corporate governance reforms. The letter was published on Friday morning and they tell the Glazers they should scrap the New York-listed club’s duel-class share structure and introduce a single class of voting stock.

They also want the Glazers to reduce their combined stake from roughly 75% – to a maximum of 49.9%.

Ultimately, the decision of the Premier League’s so-called ‘big six’ – Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur – to join a new elite breakaway league totally backfired with the sheer uproar it caused among fans, players, football directors and politicians.

JPMorgan, the US bank that was set to bankroll the new league, and Ed Woodward’s former employer, issued an apology on Friday. What all these people have in common is that they don’t know football or the culture. All they know is greed.

In the letter published on Friday morning by Sky News, they requested that the Glazers create a new supervisory board on which Manchester United fans would have overall voting control.

Read more: Manchester United – At a crossroads

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