TAMPA, Fla. – Nearly everyone in the Tampa area knows the Glazer name; the family that owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers American football team. But not every Bucs fan knows that the Glazers also own one of the world’s most valuable football teams an ocean away from Tampa Bay.
As the world watches the FIFA World Cup games, the Glazers are now considering the sale of Manchester United.
According to a post on the team’s website, the team’s board of directors, including the Glazers, will “l consider all strategic alternatives, including new investment into the club, a sale, or other transactions involving the Company.”
A quote attributed to Avram and Joel Glazer said the board will, “ensure that we best serve our fans and that Manchester United maximizes the significant growth opportunities available to the Club today and in the future.”
George Fleming has been taking in the World Cup matches from MacDinton’s Pub in Tampa’s SoHo district. He wasn’t surprised when the Glazers bought Manchester United in 2005.
An aerial view of Old Trafford Stadium, the home of Manchester United Football Club on November 23, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
“I tell my wife I enjoy football and football,” he laughed.
He’s a Bucs fan now, but he grew up in Spain, so he follows soccer closely, including the English Premier League.
“You have a top-echelon football club. Why would you not own that?” he wondered of the Glazers.
The Glazers angered some fans when they paid nearly a billion dollars for the team in a leveraged deal that left ManU in debt.
Flags are run across the end-zone after a field goal by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers against the Buffalo Bills on September 18, 2005 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Some in Tampa wonder if selling the team could have an impact on the Bucs. The Glazers have always run the two franchises separately and the Buccaneers haven’t commented on the possible sale.
Fleming believes there will be many potential buyers.
The face of Cristiano Ronaldo on a huge banner on the front of the stadium is seen through the United Trinity statue of Bobby Charlton, Dennis Law and George Best the day before his return Manchester United match v Newcastle at Old Trafford on Septem
“Manchester United is one of the top teams in the world. It’s a name brand like MacDonald’s and Nike,” he said.
The 13-time league champions haven’t won a title in recent years and their star player, Christiano Ronaldo, is leaving.
A pedestrian walks past a mural of Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo, near Old Trafford stadium, home ground of Manchester United football team, in Manchester, northern England, on November 23, 2022. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCAR
Still, experts say someone could offer billions for the team.
The subject will likely come up Friday as fans gather to watch the World Cup match between the USA and England.