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A Qatari consortium led by Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani has submitted a bid to buy Manchester United.

The Qataris are the second group, after boyhood United fan Sir Jim Ratcliffe, to confirm a bid ahead of Friday’s soft deadline of 10pm.

A statement confirmed: “Sheikh Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani today confirmed his submission of a bid for 100 per cent of Manchester United Football Club.

“The bid plans to return the Club to its former glories both on and off the pitch, and – above all – will seek to place the fans at the heart of Manchester United Football Club once more.”

The Glazer family have invited bids for the club
The Glazer family have invited bids for the club (Mike Egerton/PA)

The Glazer family completed their controversial leveraged takeover at Old Trafford in 2005, a structure that did not endear themselves to United fans.

But the Qatari statement continued: “The bid will be completely debt free via Sheikh Jassim’s Nine Two Foundation, which will look to invest in the football teams, the training centre, the stadium and wider infrastructure, the fan experience and the communities the Club supports.

“The vision of the bid is for Manchester United Football Club to be renowned for footballing excellence, and regarded as the greatest football club in the world.

“More details of the bid will be released, when appropriate, if and when the bid process develops.”