During a memorable week in which Manchester United’s seemingly unflappable owners were forced into writing a clumsy public apology – supporters began to feel that maybe the Glazers’ throne at Old Trafford may in fact be a little more wobbly than anticipated.
Indeed, a new candidate has already put himself in the frame to take over: MMA legend Conor McGregor.
After the vilified European Super League crumbled to dust on Tuesday evening, the Glazers – who have remained utterly unperturbed on their OT perch despite years of passionate criticism – actually looked a little vulnerable, with their wildly unpopular Exec Vice-Chairman Ed Woodward even announcing he would depart his post.
The shake-up has sparked excitable conversations among fans about the prospect of potential new buyers at Sir Matt Busby Way. Perhaps this would end the tenure of owners so loathed that their very presence in Manchester has led to countless protests and the formation of a new club in FC United of Manchester.
But before any real candidates could be seriously debated for a United takeover, MMA’s ultimate showman McGregor attempted to rattled a few cages by suggesting he would be keen to take the reins.
Posting on Twitter, the former UFC champion wrote: “Hey guys, I’m thinking of buying Manchester United! What do you think?”
According to some reports, McGregor is currently valued at a net worth of around a half billion dollars – but that wouldn’t be enough to prise United from the Glazers’ grip.
Forbes value Manchester United at £3.05bn – the fourth most valuable club in the world – meaning McGregor would need to cobble together a bit more loose change to turn himself into a proper contender, or launch a joint bid as part of a consortium.
Money aside, McGregor’s track record for embellishment means that most fans have refused to even entertain the notion of Notorious ownership at OT. But this isn’t the first time United have been subject to bizarre interest.
Shortly before the Glazers took full control at OT in 2005, Middle Eastern dictator Colonel Muammar “Mad Dog” Gaddafi was apparently just hours away from purchasing United – only for the deal to fall through after failing to agree on a price for the controlling stake.
As of yet, McGregor’s bid hasn’t gone any further than a sweeping declaration on social media. And with no updates for a couple of days, many have already poured cold water on the idea.
But who knows.
In a wonderful world where Deadpool and Mac from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia can purchase a fifth-tier team in North Wales, there’s always chance that anything can happen…
Featured image: Wikimedia Commons
An official Guinness Fan Zone is coming to Manchester for the Six Nations
One of the biggest Guinness Fan Zones in the UK is coming to Manchester city centre for the Six Nations this February and the best part of all is, it’s absolutely free.
With the beloved rugby union tournament kicking off on Saturday, 4 February, Guinness are bringing their popular fan zone to our lovely city and just in time for the Wales vs Ireland game, not to mention England vs Scotland later the same day.
Popping up on Baring Street, Mayfield, just round the corner from Piccadilly Station, the Six Nations fan zone will be the biggest outside of London and runs all the way until Saturday 18 March.
Transformed into a dedicated space for rugby lovers to watch the match and enjoy a fresh pint of ice-cold Guinness, the fan zone festivities don’t stop there.
To keep the party rolling, they will also be hosting a series of interactive shows, activities and live performances, including bagpipes, Irish dancers and more. There’s even an interactive beer wall – the first one to be available outside of rugby union’s historic home at Twickenham.
Once again, general admissions tickets to the fan zone are absolutely free, but you can bag yourself a table reservation for £10 per person. Better still, for super fans, you can even grab an exclusive Season Pass for a limited time only, granting you access to all five games in the competition.
This includes a special edition team jersey, access to the best seats in the house and the first 150 customers will also get a Guinness Six Nations tote bag filled with beanies, cushions and foam fingers, even temporary tattoos and face paints for you to get your full colours on.
Last but not least, those who do grab a Season Pass will also be in with a chance to win one of Guinness’ exclusive ‘Money Can’t Buy Experiences‘, this year’s main prize being four tickets to a Six Nations match, a dressing room tour and being trusted with flag bearer duty before kick-off. Mint.
Russian supporters waving Putin flags and wearing ‘Z’ war symbols questioned by police at Australian Open
A number of Russian supporters attending the Australian Open were spotted waving pro-Putin flags and wearing ‘Z’ war symbols during Novak Djokovic’s match on Wednesday evening.
Spotted in the crowd whilst watching Djokovic’s quarter-final tie against Russian tennis player Andrey Rublev, the group of fans cheering on Rublev are now said to have been questioned by local police following the stunt as a further investigation is expected to be carried out.
The nine-time tournament winner might have seen off the world number six seed in straight sets to progress to the penultimate round of the major, but the controversy that the pro-war display has caused is understandably all anyone can focus on.
You can see a significant number of Russian fans chanting “Putin!” with their flags in the stands below, as well as another man clearly flaunting the ‘Z’ symbol — synonymous with the invasion of Ukraine.
According to a statement issued by Tennis Australia, four men were questioned by local authorities in Melbourne after they revealed their pro-Putin emblems and reportedly threatened security guards inside the Rod Laver Arena then they were asked to remove them.
Victoria Police have now confirmed that while charges were made, the group of supporters were quickly ejected, with Australian Open organisers reassuring that they will “continue to work closely with event security and law enforcement agencies.”
To make matters worse, Djokovic’s father, Srđan, was later seen posing with what appears to be the same group of fans and images of Vladimir Putin outside the stadium.
The Serbian has not long put his own controversy behind him after being deported from the country due to covid regulations and his anti-vax stance last year. This surely won’t help.
The Russian invasion has been an ongoing issue at the Open, with Russian and Belarusian players now having to compete under a neutral flag.
This comes after spectators had initially been allowed to bring any flag into the arena with them. However, following the incident, certain Russian flags are now prohibited and security guards have been provided with pamphlets in order for them to check for approved national emblems.
Elsewhere, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy was both surprised and relieved to find out that Germany has confirmed they will be sending Leopard 2 tanks to bolster his country’s defences, which he only learned whilst in the middle of an interview with Sky News’ Kay Burley.
We are now approaching a year since the Russian invasion began, with Putin’s campaign having run for 11 months and 3 days.