A thread explaining the Glazers ownership of Manchester United will not do anything to appease fans, with the amount of money they've taken out of the club revealed.
In truth, United fans have been protesting the Glazers ever since the American family took over in 2005, even when they were winning league titles and Champions Leagues.
Fans are expected to protest once again next week, during the game against Liverpool, and a thread of the American's finances at United shows exactly why.
Twitter account Swiss Ramble, who often brilliantly explains the business of football, put together the thread, revealing that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers owners have taken £1.6 billion out of Old Trafford during their tenure so far.
Glazers apologists will point to #MUFC massive transfer spend, which is a meaty £1.4 bln since 2012. Furthermore, £850m in last 5 years was only surpassed by #MCFC & #CFC (both £992m), but the point here is that this is money the club has generated, not provided by the owners. pic.twitter.com/IijgjBru3Y— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
In fact, in the last 10 years, no owners in the Premier League have taken out more money than the Glazers have done at #MUFC with £154m (dividends £133m, share buyback £21m). In stark contrast, some owners have put in significant funds: #MCFC £684m, #CFC £516m and #AVFC £506m. pic.twitter.com/HpdE5xDNXr— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
Whilst United's spending on transfers has been more than most in recent years, the money hasn't come from the owners at all and is just money the club generates.
In contrast, the club's local rivals Manchester City have seen their owners pump £684 million into the club, and even low spenders at Liverpool have given the club £110 million, whilst mainly running as a good business to generate their own money.
The Red Devils are in fact the only club in England's top tier to pay dividends to the owners, whilst they are also still paying the loans, and interest, on the money borrowed to buy the club.
#MUFC are the only Premier League club to pay dividends to their shareholders, mainly the Glazers. Since 2016 they have paid a hefty £166m, averaging £22m a year. Note: the high £33m payment in 2021/22 included including £11m delayed from 2020/21. pic.twitter.com/iVdTC0u3F6— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
Focusing on the last 12 years, #MUFC £517m interest payment is nearly three times as much as the next highest club, namely #AFC with £174m. Looked at another way, it is almost as much as the rest of the Premier League combined (£536m). pic.twitter.com/0kPnmd5F6e— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
Even after all the refinancings, #MUFC £592m gross debt is virtually unchanged since the Glazers’ arrival. United’s debt was 3rd highest in the PL in 2020/21, but #CFC £1.5 bln was provided interest-free by their owner (now written-off), while #THFC £854m funded a new stadium. pic.twitter.com/enmRiiXm0u— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
Regular visitors to Old Trafford will know that the venerable old stadium has seen better days, which is unsurprising given the Glazers’ lack of investment in infrastructure. #MUFC £136m capex over the last 10 years is less than #FFC and #LCFC, but is dwarfed by #THFC £1.4 bln. pic.twitter.com/vIorSVVSoH— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
It is certainly true that #MUFC revenue has nearly tripled under the Glazers, rising from £173m to a COVID-impacted £494m in 2021, but it is worth noting that their revenue has dropped by £87m (15%) since 2017, one of the worst performances in the Big Six. pic.twitter.com/ngw8UEMKP4— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
#MUFC commercial income fell £from £279m to £232m in 2021, due to no pre-season tour and other COVID factors. That said, United’s commercial engine has essentially stalled (revenue flat for 5 years before 2021 decrease), while there has been substantial growth at their rivals. pic.twitter.com/6HpZ5nyfzd— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
While #MUFC under-performance on the pitch will have been painfully evident to United fans, they would be justified in being unhappy with the lack of financial progress in recent years, when they have also been eclipsed off the pitch by their rivals.— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
#MUFC remain in a relatively strong financial position compared to most other clubs, but fans are increasingly angry that their club continues to pay huge sums merely for the privilege of having the Glazers as owners.— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
There has been talk by former United director Michael Knighton that he wants to put together a consortium to try and buy the club from the Glazers.
However, it won't be so easy to get the club away from them, with Joel and Avram reportedly wanting around £4 billion to sell the club.
It's no wonder they want so much when they can continue to take money out of United for years and years to come and continue making millions without selling.
So whilst rival fans will continue to think that the protests are all about a lack of success, it's becoming clearer that it's about the fact the Glazers not only don't give anything to United but are constantly just taking.
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