Old Trafford's capacity could be increased to 88,000 if Man Utd sale goes ahead
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The capacity of Old Trafford, the home stadium of Manchester United, could be increased if a sale of the club goes ahead, according to reports.
The United takeover race is continuing at pace, with bids from Qatari businessman Sheikh Jassim - through his foundation - Sir Jim Ratcliffe/Ineos and Elliott Management all being submitted around the second deadline.
There has also been an increased offer from Finnish entrepreneur Thomas Zilliacus, who was a relatively late entrant into the process with a proposal that would see fans involved in decision making through purchasing half of the club.
One key issue for any party, if successful in acquiring United, would be the club's stadium.
A major criticism of the club's current owners, the Glazer family, surrounds their lack of investment into the stadium, and its facilities.
But a new report claims that redeveloping the iconic ground could be a priority if new ownership or investment comes in to the club.
Old Trafford capacity could increase
According to The Times, United chiefs have presented interested buyers with key data surrounding the stadium.
That is said to have included the amount of revenue that Old Trafford currently produces, and a range of options for how to redevelop it, including a possible expansion and the creation of a new stadium to be adjacent to the existing one - similar to the process undertaken by Tottenham.
It is claimed, however, that such a process would cost between £1-2 billion. An expansion of the Sir Bobby Charlton Stand is said to be priced in the region of £200 million, and could allow the capacity of the ground to increase to 88,000.
Currently, the stand has a capacity of 9,400, with around 12,000 seats being added in the process of any redevelopment to hit the 88,000 mark.
The Times also report that this latter option makes the Elliott bid for a minority stake 'attractive' to the Glazers, with their bid regarded as a 'significant development'.
Part of that is said to be due to the belief that United, as an asset, would only increase in value with an 88,000-seater stadium and success under Erik ten Hag, meaning the Glazers could retain control of the club and then potentially up their £6 billion asking price further down the line.
Redevelopment of the Sir Bobby Charlton Stand has been discussed previously, with the club announcing in April 2022 that they had appointed planners to oversee a potential revamp of the stadium.
And BBC Sport claimed that Joel Glazer would prefer to see the club remain at Old Trafford, rather than build an entirely new stadium.